Social media brings instantaneous images of Haiti - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Social media brings instantaneous images of Haiti


MADISON (WKOW) -- Instantaneous images from Haiti are changing the way we view catastrophes around the world.

27 News spent the day as much of you did, looking at the devastating images from thousands of miles away, and trying to figure out how we could help.

Hours after the earthquake hit, YouTube was full of raw home videos, some now already watched by hundreds of thousands of viewers.

Steve Noll, a Marketing Instructor from Madison College, says this social media response is changing communication.

Noll says, "Seeing this almost uncensored is amazing, yet scary and horrifying at how fast information is coming out."

On Twitter, eye-witnesses describe the scene. Another pleas for help, saying go out.. it's ugly out there.

Janet Staker Woerner of Herzig University says in situations like this, the Internet is often the only way to get ahold of loved ones.

But social media not only is connecting frantic family members, it's creating an instantaneous world-wide response.. to help.

On Twitter, there's already a "help Haiti" link. Users can text to help.

The Red Cross even has a video on You Tube.

Noll adds, "All this information came out so fast, and made it seem like it was happening in our own backyard. Really, our whole backyard is the whole world today."

A world that's responding almost as fast as events unfold.

As ways to help multiply, you're going to want to be aware of charity scams. Make sure you're directing your money to a legitimate charity.. before you hit send.

If you think you're being targeted by a scam.. call the state's consumer protection agency to let them know.

Online Reporter: Teresa Mackin

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