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Panic networking

entertainment Updated: Jan 20, 2011 01:44 IST
Hindustan Times
Earthquake

The roads were empty. Newspapers had gone to press. 24/7 news channels were running earlier newsfeeds in a loop. Yet, seconds after Delhi felt the first tremble of the earthquake, at around 1.55am early Wednesday morning, the whole world knew what was going on — all thanks to social networking websites.

The earthquake — 7.4 on the Richter scale — hit southwestern Pakistan and border areas of Iran and Afghanistan, and the aftershocks were felt all across the Capital. Twitter user, Amit Mehra wrote, “Woken up by restless dogs to find news of tremors in Delhi due to Pak earthquake on Twitter, hope all is well.”

Former IPL chairman Lalit Modi and actor Ranvir Shorey, who had been tweeting about the India Vs South Africa match, began retweeting news about the quake. The fact that people were updating messages during the earthquake was also a subject of humour. Rahul Sharma wrote, “Breaking news: 739 dead trying to update status messages when they should have been avoiding falling debris.”