David R. Henderson  

Tocqueville's Tweeters

Egoism, Libertarianism, Persua... Commuting, Chronic Stress, and...

Private Sector, 1: FEMA, 0

Social media is [sic] often recognized narrowly as a way to connect with friends, or to share and read the news. Yesterday it was demonstrated that social media can serve as a medium of mobilization for disaster relief, helping Americans all over the country reach out and help those affected by the tornado in Oklahoma on Monday.

Shortly after the destructive twister tore through the town of Moore outside Oklahoma City , conservative radio personality and talking head Glenn Beck used Twitter to organize a "convoy of hope" to travel to Oklahoma to provide early disaster relief. Within hours, Beck's team had used Twitter to locate trucks and supplies, and they were on their way, arriving in the Moore area bearing food, water, and diapers.

UPDATE: I neglected to give the source. It's here.

Comments and Sharing

COMMENTS (8 to date)
Daniel Kuehn writes:

"Private Sector, 1: FEMA, 0"

I had no idea relieving hardship was a competition :)

ColoComment writes:

How else might one evaluate the actual efficiency and effectiveness of FEMA but in comparison with real alternatives?

Also, I don't recall anyone cutting FEMA any slack after hurricane Katrina. Why should it be any different now?

Mark Brophy writes:

FEMA has been cut lots of slack. Katrina was many years ago and FEMA still exists. Why hasn't it been abolished?

MG writes:

Relieveing hardship is indeed a competition when FEMA deprives me of the use of some of my money, and the time it will now take me to earn that additional money, in the best way I can to relieve hardship. Worse, every time I see the final tally on disaster relief bills, that bear no relation to the relief provided, the good samaritan in my conscience grows a little more cynical, detached.

Aaron Zierman writes:

Are you trying to say that charity doesn't need to be forced? Help can arrive (and arrive more efficiently) from outside the government? How absurd! ;)

David writes:

Within a day of the disaster donations started to come in.
Chesapeake Energy: $1 mill
Devon Energy: $2.5 mill
Kevin Durant: $1 mill

Along with many other monetary contributions cars where lined up for blocks dropping off supplies at donation locations.

Y.T. writes:

Social media is very helpful to get in touch with families and friends during disasters. When a strong earthquake shook Japan in 2011, people posted on Twitter to let their followers know that they are safe. A 500% increase in Tweets from Japan in the moments after the earthquake.

Bri writes:

[Comment removed pending confirmation of email address. Email the webmaster@econlib.org to request restoring this comment. A valid email address is required to post comments on EconLog and EconTalk.--Econlib Ed.]

Comments for this entry have been closed
Return to top