Tracking the earthquake on Twitter

by Ben Myers

Jim and I felt the earth shaking, hesitated a moment, exchanged nervous glances from our respective desks and then calmly headed outside – just like a school-year fire drill. After sitting on the ground (as my legs were shaky) for a moment, I went back into our 100 year-old office to grab one thing – my iPod Touch – to see what the world was saying about the earthquake. And I guess they’re saying a lot.

Various new sources are now reporting on the severity and size of the earthquake thanks to Twitter. (Initial tweets say the quake was a 5.7, and reached from Montreal to Kitchener).

Found this great resource for tracking the twitter response:

http://trendsmap.com/local/ca/ottawa# & http://trendsmap.com/r/JKhc

And the info (and humor) keeps flooding in:

@davidreevely Windows cracked and out at Rideau Centre. [in Ottawa]

@scottgow Early reports have some Torontonians peeved at not being regarded as epi-“Centre of the Universe” #earthquake

@nickcharney Office is flocking to mainstream media sites, talking about the details I had when we were in the street acquired via twitter

@laurapayton Senate was sitting when quake hit. Pages and table officers are on the lawn in black uniforms and flowing robes.

@krusk I heard a chimney fell off a building on Lisgar St. downtown Ottawa… Any other damage? Also hear lots of sirens around here..

And I just saw my first tweetpic of some damage…

@tomcort my building after the #earthquake in #gatineau http://twitpic.com/1zbdkh

More analysis to come!

Ben Myers

Analyst

See more posts from Ben