Katrina: NOLA.com blog saved lives

[Keyword: ]. Amidst the incompetence and valuing of property over people, here’s a more positive story about Katrina:

Before its offices were literally swamped with water, the Times-Picayune was inundated with frantic phone calls from city residents crying out for rescue. People trapped in their attics sent text messages to friends outside the state, who then used the NOLA.com blogs and message boards to post the addresses and locations of their trapped friends.

“”It turned into a vital link for people needing rescue,” Donley says of the Web site, which has received over 200 million page views over the past week and a half — several times its normal amount. “Aids to [Lt. Gen. Russel] Honore told us that his group was specifically monitoring our blogs for directions to trapped people, and they told us lives were saved because of [the Web site].”“

Meanwhile, Flickr represents an invaluable and uncensored repository of images related to the hurricane, despite FEMA’s request not to show images of those killed. There’s also some thought paid by Poynter to the use of maps in reporting the disaster.

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