Now you can find relevant social media content on Public Alerts...

This is our 2nd post on how we’re developing our products to allow users to contribute what they know about an unfolding crisis.

Many people on the front lines of a disaster are sharing relevant information through social media. We want to help make this content easier to find, and available alongside information from official sources. 

It’s no small feat to identify the most useful information— but it’s important to start somewhere. That’s why we’re taking a first step to integrate social media in our #crisisresponse products. 

Starting today, you can find relevant data from Twitter on a subset of Google Public Alerts. We launched Public Alerts to provide updates from official sources, such as the National Weather Service, via Google Now, Search, and Google Maps. Now, some of the more extreme Public Alerts will include Tweets to help answer important questions: are schools closing? Are neighbors evacuating? What are people seeing on the front lines of a storm? 

Here’s an example: this is a Public Alert from a flood warning from last week, viewed on a mobile phone. In this screenshot, existing sections such as Recommended Actions and News will be accompanied by a feed of relevant Tweets, seen as you scroll down. This is also available on the desktop view of an Alert.

For now, this is only in English-speaking regions, and only for our Public Alerts product, but we’re working to add new kinds of social content to other products and geographies in the future. 

We hope these initial steps help people access more of the information they need during a crisis— and we welcome your feedback on how we can do more. In the meantime, stay safe this hurricane season!
160
51
Alain DEUDJUI's profile photosihamid abalkassim's profile photoLeah Averett's profile photoStore Buying's profile photo
20 comments
 
That's awesome. Is it an app or is it something hidden that appears when you are in the affected area. 
 
Tweets show up on any alert for which we find relevant ones. The alerts themselves are web pages which are publicly accessible. Our aim is to show high-value alerts to the right people at the right time and place so they get surfaced via web search and Google maps for related searches and in Google Now for people in the affected area. 
 
You should have these also show up when there is an emergency. Like the phone calls I get for amber alerts. To the weather alerts. This could be very useful and could actually save lives. Keep working on it. I like where this is going. 
 
Not about pushing information, already dozens of apps. Many in the NWS still consider Social Media an experiment and quite a few still don't use it much or use it incorrectly. "Official Source" doesn't make it right or even useful information. Many issues with this type of notifications and with information being instant and changing just as fast as it appears like when wind shifts in a fire or dams break where you just sent someone to evacuate to. Really disappointing across the board  to see the continuing lack of concern for the public's safety just to stay in the game and have the newest shiny whistle. 
 
I thought the sandy coverage was awesome. Something like this would have made it more immersive. 
 
Dawn, I agree.  There was 16 billion dollars unaccounted for after the disaster recovery dust settled.   It's these types of uncoordinated efforts that will leave people without the help they need.  Saying the before mentioned.  I can appreciate the enthusiasm in other subjects.  Crisis response is a critical life or death subject and not something to create on the fly. 

Accessing others private data needs to be managed and I strongly advise everyone to check out NIEM National Information Exchange Model. 
Translate
 
I expect these will at least be part of Google Now. I've been getting NWS and other alerts as part of Google Now built into the Android OS on my phone.

I already follow a bunch of weather focused twitter accounts and local city government accounts. It would be cool if I could customize this list, or set up different areas I would like to keep track of, in addition to my local area.
Translate
Translate
Translate
 
I work with our County RACES and SKYWARN programs, do you have any plans to obtain data from RF locations when typical communications do not work, such as cell phones and traditional networks?
 
I am using maps to put shelter locations for the local Red Cross in a map, but unfortunately on my personal account I can only have a small amount of layers.
Is there a free way to get more layers?
I would do it over the red cross, but if I ask IT to get that started, we will still be sitting here in a year or two.
Add a comment...