Why Social Media Is the New Face of Disaster Response [Infographic]

By Devon Glenn 

Can disaster victims get by with a little help from their Facebook friends? In this infographic, USF’s Online MPA┬áprogram┬ámakes a case for social media as the new face of disaster response by illustrating the role that social networks played in the Haiti earthquake of 2010, Japan’s tsunami and earthquake in 2011, and Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

In Japan, a hospital worker Tweeted to U.S. Ambassador John Roos to help move 80 patients away from a dangerous nuclear power plant. Not only were New Yorkers on Facebook or Twitter when Sandy hit, but the Red Cross was there as well — there were 23 staffers monitoring 2.5 million Sandy-related postings.┬áSocial media even came in handy after Haiti’s earthquake, when the Red Cross was able to raise $3 million in 48 hours by having people text their donations using their cell phones.

See more statistics on social media responses to natural disasters in this infographic below.