This chapter describes how researchers and developers may improve the design of technical innovations for crisis communicators by testing how user-friendly the innovation…
This chapter describes how researchers and developers may improve the design of technical innovations for crisis communicators by testing how user-friendly the innovation is for its intended end users. In the RESCUE project, a tool for social media information gathering was developed. During this process, tool usability was thoroughly tested. Good usability allows the user to complete tasks and achieve goals with effectiveness, efficiency and satisfaction. The purpose of the usability testing was to strive for a tool that is easy to use during demanding circumstances and contributes to a high level of situation awareness (SA) among users. SA is about being aware of what is happening around you – during, for example, emergency assignments – and what this means for your on-going work tasks. The main focus of this chapter is to describe how usability testing was applied throughout the tool development process, from the pre-production planning phase to the final phase. As a part of this, the tool features are described.
Technical solutions can be important when key communicators take on the task of making sense of social media flows during crises. However, to provide situation awareness…
Technical solutions can be important when key communicators take on the task of making sense of social media flows during crises. However, to provide situation awareness during high-stress assignments, usability problems must be identified and corrected. In usability studies, where researchers investigate the user-friendliness of a product, several types of data gathering methods can be combined. Methods may include subjective (surveys and observations) and psychophysiological (e.g. skin conductance and eye tracking) data collection. This chapter mainly focuses on how the latter type can provide detailed clues about user-friendliness. Results from two studies are summarised. The tool tested is intended to help communicators and journalists with monitoring and handling social media content during times of crises.
Purpose – In the chapter, journalistic work ethics on the scene during school shootings and journalists’ psychological stress reactions after such work is studied.Approach…
Purpose – In the chapter, journalistic work ethics on the scene during school shootings and journalists’ psychological stress reactions after such work is studied.
Approach – Findings are based on several qualitative studies carried out separately at different time periods, spanning over a decade. Included cases are one from the United States, Columbine (1999), and two from Finland, Jokela (2007) and Kauhajoki (2008). Similarities and differences between cases are pinpointed, and general conclusions are drawn.
Findings – Results show that while technical equipment and publication platforms have developed between cases, journalists’ ethical issues, response to public criticism, and patterns of postcrisis reactions remain similar.
Practical implications – As implications in the area of journalism ethics and stress reactions, the authors conclude that work in crises will be the rule rather than the exception during a journalist's career. Ethical considerations and individual response patterns to an event interact in complex ways. Personal preparation and knowledge in the area of ethics are of crucial importance for being able to function professionally during assignments.
Social implications – Personal knowledge regarding journalism ethics and psychological stress are of importance, since individual mistakes when informing about a crisis can have long-lasting societal effects.
Value of chapter – In the chapter, the authors underline the need to develop a personal understanding of typical crisis-related journalistic work strategies (autopilot/hyper mode), ethical boundaries, and possible stress reactions, for enabling an adequate work approach during assignments. Also, a number of possible predictors for emotional distress in journalists during crisis-related assignments are proposed.
This chapter summarises the findings of a case study on social media activity during the 22 July 2011 terrorist attacks in Norway. Based on these findings and on theories…
This chapter summarises the findings of a case study on social media activity during the 22 July 2011 terrorist attacks in Norway. Based on these findings and on theories and previous research on the role of social media in situation awareness (SA) configuration during crisis situations, the chapter offers seven recommendations for key communicators in official crisis management and response institutions, journalistic institutions, NGOs and others: (1) acknowledge social media as important and master monitoring and management of features across social media; (2) synchronise communication and establish a standard operating procedure (SOP); (3) establish and make known a joint social media emergency account; (4) participate, interact and take the lead; (5) be aware of non-hashtagged content; (6) implement verification tools and practices and (7) engage with and learn from celebrities.
This chapter analyses the Norwegian authorities’ presence on Twitter during the 22 July 2011 terrorist attacks. Twitter activity by two official institutions is analysed…
This chapter analyses the Norwegian authorities’ presence on Twitter during the 22 July 2011 terrorist attacks. Twitter activity by two official institutions is analysed in particular, namely, the blood bank at Oslo University Hospital and the Norwegian Police Security Services (PST). Our findings show that the Norwegian authorities were almost completely absent on Twitter during the critical hours of the terrorist attack, and that there was no coordination and synchronisation of communication from the authorities. This official silence allowed the diffusion of speculation and misinformation to take place; these were neither corrected nor addressed, as the analysed PST case shows. In contrast, the blood bank used Twitter to mobilise blood donors to address an acute problem: a shortage of blood to treat casualties. The chapter concludes by offering recommendations to the authorities for future major incidents.
The chapter addresses the question of how crisis and emergency communicators in the justice (police) and health sector in Norway reflect on their use – or lack of use – of…
The chapter addresses the question of how crisis and emergency communicators in the justice (police) and health sector in Norway reflect on their use – or lack of use – of social media during the terror crisis on 22 July 2011. We examine how these communicators in the years following the crisis have developed their use of social media to optimise their and the public’s awareness of similar crises. Our semi-structured interviews with key emergency managers and responders display how the terrorist-induced crisis in 2011 was a wake-up call for communicators in the police and the health sector. They reflect on the significance, strengths and weaknesses of social media in the management of crises such as this one.
This chapter examines how those directly affected by the terror attack on Utøya in Norway on 22 July 2011 used social media to cope with the trauma. Through interviews…
This chapter examines how those directly affected by the terror attack on Utøya in Norway on 22 July 2011 used social media to cope with the trauma. Through interviews with eight survivors and a study of their Facebook walls during the first month after the shooting, the chapter sets out to answer how they tell and re-tell the trauma on Facebook. In what way does their re-telling of the terror event give it meaning? With Narrative Therapy as its inspiration, this chapter studies different themes and stories on the Facebook walls, what is told about the event, its effects and responses to it. The meaning derived from the trauma is a story of national unity, democratic values and the redefining of Norway as a multicultural society. As for the perpetrator, he is written out of the story.