立即打开
社交媒体成民间救灾利器

社交媒体成民间救灾利器

Jessi Hempel 2012年11月27日
微博等社交媒体兴起后,人们在灾难中的自救活动也深受影响。一条求助信息就可能引发无数网友的转发,吸引大量的资源。同时,人们也越来越善于利用社交媒体组织、协调救灾活动,提高救灾的效率和透明度,扩大救灾活动的覆盖范围和影响力。刚刚过去的“桑迪”飓风就验证了这一切。

Two Boots Pizza的老板安迪•万迪拉克

    相片中的这个人叫安迪•万迪拉克,他在纽约布鲁克林的公园坡开了一家名叫Two Boots Pizza的披萨店。桑迪飓风袭击纽约的那天,他让在店里表演的乐师把全家人都带到他那里躲避这场天灾。乐师向安迪描述了飓风过后的惨状,于是安迪决心“做饭报国”。他用Facebook和Twitter向披萨店的老主顾们请求帮助。到了那周周末,他每天已经可以向灾民提供大约1,500碗汤了。

    对于任何救灾活动来说,这种高尚的志愿行为都是非常重要的。不过“桑迪”飓风却让我们看到,社交网络技术如何能让安迪的小小善举迅速取得一呼百应的效果。比如有一个叫“占领桑迪”的活动就吸引了不少人的关注,它是由“占领华尔街运动”衍生而来的。“占领桑迪”是一个松散的志愿者组织,志愿者们利用网络和移动设备,呼吁为灾民提供食物和生活用品。除了“占领桑迪”之外,还有许多个人也自发地在网络阵地上树起大旗,成为组织救灾的急先锋。比如我最近就在Facebook上关注了几个与救灾有关的群组,包括“大家帮助大家”(“Nobodys Helping Everybody”,168个关注)、“回报桑迪飓风灾民”("Giving Back to those Affected by Sandy" ,3,975个关注)、以及“罗卡韦救灾”(“Rockaway Relief”,9,311个关注)等。

    洪水退去的几个小时后,社交网络技术无疑保障了人们快速有效的沟通。甚至连纽约市消防部门都在Twitter上发布哪里有紧急需求。无家可归的人们在社交公寓租赁网站Airbnb上寻找栖身之所,许多纽约的Airbnb用户自愿免费为灾民提供住处。我妹妹听一个朋友说,附近有一个避难所缺少物资,于是她在Facebook上更新了状态,说她打算到那看看。结果才过了一个小时,她就收到了20包大衣和卫生用品,还有两份意大利面,于是她大包小包地赶到了那里。

    不过社交媒体也有自身的缺点。随着Facebook和图片分享网站Instagram等社交网络的普及,几乎每个有智能手机的人都能当纪录片导演。因此“桑迪”飓风可能也成了有史以来被拍了最多救灾纪录片的一场灾难。飓风过后,有一条船搁浅到了重灾区罗卡韦的一条街道中间,这张照片被转载了无数次。几乎每天,都有我的某位Facebook好友会把这张照片转载一次。但更透明不等于更精确,有时甚至恰恰相反。有时一张打动人的图片可能会成为一个网络符号,不管它的精确性如何;有时候一些不太打动人的图片却被人忽视了。而且,对于一件并非实时发生的事,网络往往不会追踪报道它的后续情况。灾情瞬息万变,一张周五早上的图片,到了周五下午可能就会大变样了。

    Here's to Andy Wandilak, the owner of Two Boots Pizza in Park Slope Brooklyn. On the day Hurricane Sandy decimated entire neighborhoods of New York, he offered to feed and shelter the family of a musician who plays at his restaurant. The guy's descriptions of the storm's aftermath were tragic. So Andy started cooking. He used Facebook and Twitter to ask the restaurant's patrons for support. By the weekend, he was serving up roughly 1,500 cups of soup daily.

    This kind of superhuman volunteering has always been central to any relief effort, but Hurricane Sandy has showcased how social technologies can cause Andy's small initiative to scale quickly. Ad hoc relief efforts like Occupy Sandy have attracted attention for this already. An outgrowth of the Occupy Wall Street Movement, Occupy Sandy is a loosely organized group of activists-turned-volunteers who have been using the web and mobile devices to bring food, supplies and help to people in need. But beyond Occupy, there are many individuals who have stuck a flag in the digital sand and declared themselves the captains of relief efforts. Facebook groups I have recently "liked" include "Nobodys Helping Everybody" (168 likes), "Rockaway Relief" (9,311 likes), and "Giving Back to those Affected by Sandy" (3,975 likes).

    In the hours after the floods subsided last month, there's no question these social technologies enabled fast efficient communication. The New York City Fire Department turned to Twitter to help identify emergency needs. Displaced people turned to Airbnb to find beds, which New York Airbnb hosts volunteered to share free of charge. Heck, my sister, having heard from a friend that a nearby shelter was underserved, updated her Facebook (FB) status that she planned to make a trip down and an hour later, she had 20 bags of coats and toiletries and two lasagnas to bring.

    But social media has downsides, too. Now that Facebook and Instagram have made documentarians of everyone with a smartphone, Hurricane Sandy may have spawned the most documented disaster relief effort of all time. There's one boat in the middle of the street somewhere in the Rockaways that shows up on my Facebook feed nearly every single day, snapped by a different friend of a friend. But more transparency doesn't equal more accuracy; in fact, just the opposite. A captivating image can become an Internet meme regardless of its veracity, while less compelling images are overlooked. And the Internet is not yet great at giving context to any event that doesn't happen in realtime. In a fast-moving relief effort, a Wednesday morning image could have changed drastically by Friday afternoon.

  • 热读文章
  • 热门视频
活动
扫码打开财富Plus App