I have never been one to sit around and watch the news- for the most part I find it depressing and somewhat scary. I guess this means that I miss out on a lot, but I have noticed that, being an avid user on Facebook, I learn about many recent events from my friends. The day of the tragedy in Japan, I had heard about what was going on through Facebook postings and tweets from people that I follow, but I had no idea how serious it actually was. When first checking my Facebook page, I was met by a ton of status’s saying things like “pray for Japan,” and Twitter was exactly the same. The way that we learn about things has changed drastically, whether it’s that your best friend’s boyfriend broke up with her, or that a natural disaster just took place leaving thousands stranded and homeless.
Although a Facebook status is by no means a way to help the people who continue to suffer in Japan, to me, it was touching to see people acknowledging what had happened. Many people seemed truly affected by it and continue to share their thoughts and prayers via Facebook and Twitter. Many of my Facebook friends were posting pictures and videos of what was going on and I thought this was a great way to spread awareness for what happened. I looked and and watched all of their postings which led me to look into the situation more by using Google to find other articles A lot of people found very inspirational quotes and sayings to show their sympathy. Many people, like myself, will not sit down and watch the news channel, but they will check their Facebook three or four times a day and I think that it is great that people were being informed through a social network.
There have also been “Pray For Japan” Facebook groups that people have created and others are joining to show support and awareness for the disaster. Another awesome way that people are trying to be involved is by creating groups to make donations to Japan. The Red Cross has set up a site where you can donate money to help. Not everyone can jump on a plane and fly over to help, but donating some money will definitely make a difference. I really hope that people will take the time to get involved with these opportunities because it is such a quick and easy way to help. Most of the time social networks give us information overload. I usually do not care to hear about what so and so had for lunch and how many times they brushed their teeth, but using social networks for a beneficial purpose, such as to inform people and show support for a country who has been devastated by a natural disaster, is definitely inspiring and taking technology in the right direction.