When a gunman shot and killed a former coworker and then was killed by cops, tweets started flooding the web just moments after 9:02 a.m. Even Mayor Bloomberg tweeted out a link to a live stream of his press conference to keep folks informed. But such instantaneous reaction to the shooting could backfire when it comes to social media.
Chris Dessi, CEO of Silverback Social, says the big danger of unfiltered twitter pictures .blasting to thousands if not millions is that it could be a shock to the system.
So many young people are the audience behind social media. And imagine the catastrophic impact if the victims families and friends first see or hear about the event in this alarming way.
Aside from pictures that may be too gruesome, social media also delivers information as a piece meal, which may lead to a lot of incorrect speculations.
From Kim Kardashion to Perez Hilton to Wall Street Journal to millions of other users, the Twitter universe was aflutter with tweets regarding Friday's shooting.
"Empire State Building" was one of the top trending subjects, meaning typing in "#empirestatebuilding" in the search box or typing "ESB" or "Empire State" leads you to streams and streams of dialogue pertaining to the tragedy.
While social media is a double edged sword, the reality is that it is here to stay. So perhaps it is best to use it honestly and wisely.