Gini Dietrich

Death of Bin Laden Spreads Rapidly through Social Media

By: Gini Dietrich | May 2, 2011 | 

With the news last night of Osama Bin Laden being killed, I’m not sure anything PR or marketing related today is appropriate.

I made the joke late that I was sure the President was so threatened by Spin Sucks Pro that he had to upstage us. Or maybe he was really wanting the attention back on the United States after the Royal Wedding.

Kind of funny? OK. Probably not.

What is interesting, though, and totally not a joke, is how the news unfolded as we watched this historical event.

First, the traditional media began to announce there were reports that Bin Laden was dead and they were waiting for Obama to make the announcement. The New York Times online, in addition to listening to George Stephanopoulos on ABC in the background, was the first place we looked.

But, as you know, it’s impossible to get any news from the Times without paying for it. Then Mr. D’s phone rang and my text messages lit up. And that’s when we decided to go to the Twitter to see what additional information we could get.

The thing I find most interesting is, two years ago when Twitter was just becoming a household name, national media would scoff at “news” being released on the social network. Before anyone had announced Natasha Richardson had died while skiing, news of her death was on Twitter not hours, but days, before traditional media confirmed it.

Then, as traditional media began to feel the effects, you started to see the ticker at the bottom of news programs and on websites that said, “Such and such being told on Twitter. We’re waiting to confirm it.”

Now CNN is the top news source on Twitter. Just 26 months later.

And now, within mere minutes, people around the world are creating Facebook pages and nearly 300,000 people are rallied in support (this is nine hours after it was created).

And tools, such as Storify, have aggregated the information into one spot for you to quickly scan and review what’s most interesting.

The world, it is a changin’, and it’s happening much more quickly than anything in history.

Not only have we had two historic events in the span of three days, but we’ve watched social media used effectively and efficiently to tell the stories…in a matter of mere seconds.

Are we, perhaps, entering the social media revolution?

About Gini Dietrich

Gini Dietrich is the founder and CEO of Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm. She is the author of Spin Sucks, co-author of Marketing in the Round, and co-host of Inside PR. She also is the lead blogger at Spin Sucks and is the founder of Spin Sucks Pro.

  • Hey Gini, I heard it on Twitter and apparently Twitter is the place where there was LIVE show of what was happening. You know I never add links to comments but I ran into this and I think it will be interesting addition to your story –

    What happened is that a person from the place Bin Laden was killed heard all the fuss and tweeted about it while it was happening. So Twitter had a live stream, lol.

    I am just glad they got him, I don’t think it will stop the war or stop terrorism, but I do believe this is a small victory for the poor families of all the people that lost lives because of him!

  • ginidietrich

    @Brankica I’m with you. He’s not been more than a figurehead the past several years because he’s been on the run. So I don’t think it’ll stop terrorism. But it certainly has to be demoralizing to Al Quaeda and it is a victory for the families who lost loved ones on 9/11.

    Thanks for the Fast Company article. I’ll check it out!

  • ginidietrich

    @Brankica Whoa. That article is pretty powerful.

  • FrankDickinson

    “Are we, perhaps, entering the social media revolution?”

    Yes, affirmative, yep, you bet your ass….and it’s a revolution that will change the old, tried ways of communication and interaction.

    Vi Va La Twitter!

  • ginidietrich

    @FrankDickinson LOL! I guess everyone had better get on the bus then, huh??

  • KenMueller

    It’s interesting. the revolution is here, but like most Social Media it’s being driven from the bottom up, grassroots. Kinda odd that I wrote a post this weekend that I published this morning about how the traditional news media, particularly on the local level, continues to be behind the public on breaking news. Even this morning a portion of my city has been evacuated due to a “credible” explosives threat at a downtown parking garage, and yet the local media is behind Twitter on the news. At the risk of being “that guy”….and I hope you don’t mind Gini, here’s my post from today about local news and Twitter, in relation to last week’s weather emergencies in our area.

    As a former journalist, I’m very interested to see how the traditional news media adapts to social.

  • bdorman264

    It was so fast it was tweeted 30 minutes before he was dead…………

    It is a changin’; are you a change agent?

    I have much more but walking into a meeting; I knew your day wouldn’t be complete w/out a wise crack from me……….:)

    Go Spin Sucks Pro Go!

  • So now this weekend has been scripted by Disney. The prince married his sweetheart and the evil magician has been killed.

    Seriously, yes we are getting a lot more stories, more accounts and is this a revolution? I’m not sure. We are getting flooded by reports, eyewitness accounts who say they are tweeting live, but who knows?

    @ginidietrich you reported on fake personas created to spread stories and as much as I believe OBL is dead, this doesn’t mean I believe all the stories which are being pushed through social media about it.

    The first time I heard about OBL was in 98′ when Clinton bombed some tents in Afghanistan. As soon as we tried to write this story we had accounts coming from everywhere, from the goat farmer who had seen OBL leave the camp to journalist colleagues in Pakistan who would swear OBL had died.

    The “revolution’ means we are now faced with a lot more speakers and this is good, but it surely makes our job a lot harder to decipher the real from the fake.

    We are now faced with a lot more ‘noise’ and thank God Spin Sucks helps us find our way through this. Go Spin Sucks Pro, help us!

  • FrankDickinson

    @ginidietrich 🙂 get on or get left behind – this sucker is movin’ out!

  • JayDolan

    Better headline: Undeath of Bin Laden Spreads Rapidly through Social Media.

    Seriously though – What always amazes me with breaking news like this is comparing what I read on Twitter before the actual announcement with the facts afterwards. There’s nothing like the over-hyped internet rumor mill to come up with crazy ideas in 140 characters.

  • Pingback: Death of Bin Laden Spreads Rapidly through Social Media | Spin Sucks | Midia Social()

  • patrickreyes

    Get on the bus or get left behind. Thinking good thoughts for Spin Sucks Pro today!

  • KenMueller

    @patrickreyes or more aptly, Get on the bus or get UNDER it!

  • HowieSPM

    I knew there was some reason I liked you @ginidietrich I was just having a discussion with @johnfalchetto that guy in France about this. And he will agree you crafted this very well.

    Social media helped spread the news really fast I had an issue with a big name last night who instantly without checking declared Twitter the first to have the story confirming the power of social media to be the fasted to get you news. Yet I found out on TV (Mets-Phillies game) then HuffPost then Twitter. So much for that.I was like its been 10 minutes since the rumor have you checked Radian 6 or called Twitter to check for the first Tweet and then compared to every news website and make sure someone in the know didn’t tell their wife after sex who then called Shirley the neighbor…..

    This was a news story that had zero urgency. It is a GREAT news story but if I found out 10 minutes later than you who really cares. Did it impact my life? And with 96.7% of the US not on Twitter yesterday never mind how many at night most of us found out via Traditional Web or TV or Phone or SMS Text.

    But as with Social Media not causing any Mid East Uprisings the technology enabled people to connect in certain ways to ensure stories spread properly and without censorship.

  • HowieSPM

    @johnfalchetto @ginidietrich I also heard the Bieber is marrying a Jonas Brother in Massachusetts and it is going to be broadcast live on the Disney Channel. Lindsay Lohan finally kicked drugs and Charlie Sheen actually won today. This is Disney’s shining moment!

  • HowieSPM

    @bdorman264 But I know it’s not a walk Bill. You have a strut today. Because you sent that tweet that was 30 minutes before he was dead 25 years in the future when we finally discovered how to do time travel…for Tweets.

  • HowieSPM

    @FrankDickinson @ginidietrich Gini I need a Trademark thingy when I use my now semi-famous and partially unknown Social Media is a Revolution in Interpersonal Communication Technology statement I coined in 1968 from my Crib. But perfect time to thank Frank for the chance to use it again.

  • @Brankica wow. that is an amazing story. thanks for sharing that.

  • I received the news that Obama would speak via text – so I went first to twitter while I turned on CNN. I learned everything I needed to know on Twitter, faster, and more efficiently and FAR less painfully than I did than with CNN, which was killing me slowly with the incredible FLUFF, and painful commentary by Wolf and his team before the President came on.

  • HowieSPM

    I invited Old Skool Rapper Flava Flav into the Spin Sucks House!

    What Time is It? (looks at his necklace watch)

    Its Spin Sucks Pro Time!

    What Time is It? (looks at his necklace watch)

    Its Spin Sucks Pro Time!

    Listen if you’re missin’ y’all

    Swingin’ while I’m singin’

    Givin’ whatcha gettin’

    Knowin’ what I know

    Got to give us what we want

    Gotta give us what we need

    What do we want?

    Spin sucks Pro!

    I can’t hear you! What do we need?

    Spin Sucks Pro!

    What we got to say

    Power to the people no delay

    What Time is It? (looks at his necklace watch)

    Its Spin Sucks Pro Time!

    What Time is It? (looks at his necklace watch)

    Its Spin Sucks Pro Time!

    *yes I stole some real Public Enemy Lyrics just for you @ginidietrich to make this ditty. I bet we can get him to rap it for your big TV commercial. I am waiting to hear back from Snoop Dogg more ditty’s could be coming.

  • 3HatsComm

    @Lisa Gerber Same.. saw the pending announcement, all scooped by other sources. Skipped the fluff.

  • @Lisa Gerber @Brankica Awesome perspective with that Fast Company article, Brankica! Thanks for sharing it.

  • @HowieSPM You are tha bomb! @ginidietrich I think you should totally use this in your promotions of Spin Sucks Pro…I’m sure Flava Flav is in between reality shows and could make it happen.

  • 3HatsComm

    I’m with @HowieSPM on how well and fast you put this together. Which speaks to the story itself, that rush to create the first Tumblrs and UnFan FB pages, the race to tell everyone. Along with the tweets.. and being the first to tell a joke. Gotta admit I liked the one of dying from royal wedding boredom. FWIW.

  • To echo what so many have already said, thank you for pulling this together – very well laid out and logically presented and I love that. I agree, traditional new outlets were a big fat Fail. I was watching one of my favorite guilty pleasures, watching Ne Ne go down in flames on Celebrity Apprentice and saw the big announcement come across the screen. By the time the news team broke in, I learned all I needed from Twitter and the commentators, no need to even hear the Pres at that point. Amazing times we live in.

    Remembering those that were so impacted by this man, I wish them peace.

  • KDillabough

    This shows, once again, that all those who say that social media “doesn’t work” will need to come up with more convincing statements.

    There’s a saying that goes: some people will drive the bus, some people will be passengers on the bus, and some will be left in the town the bus just pulled out from…or under the bus as per @patrickreyes @KenMueller

    Gini, you’re the maven of making complex info clear. Thanks!

  • @HowieSPM If its Tweeted it must be true! @ginidietrich

  • I would say maybe media is recognizing social media as an effective news channel more. The “revolution” happened at least two years ago; like anything, some channels will always be playing catch-up.

    And social media still needs the research and facts that can only comes from solid journalism, so in that respect I’d say the “old” still has dibs over the “new”. 😉

  • HowieSPM

    @DannyBrown @johnfalchetto and I were discussing that today. He said in his past life in journalism often he had to sit on a story waiting for validity before publishing and often others were first. But if you are wrong your believability takes a hit.

    All we have at rick on Twitter is a Klout score! LOL

  • MimiMeredith

    Gini, please accept my added praise, not only for the comprehensive nature of this post (excellent reporting!), but also for the responsiveness and engagement it demonstrates.

    What bothered me most last night, and again this morning, is the automation that some people count as engagement in social media. I was so offended by the autotweets that kept mindlessly popping up last night in the middle sincere exchanges of news and emotion. And then this morning, as my inbox was populated with automated blog posts–even from those who blog on spiritual topics (and the events of the last 10 hours give me a lot of fodder for spiritual wrestling with which I’d like some help!)

    I understand that I need to get on board with the automation of some of my social media engagement. But if I hope that on occasions as historic and somber as last night, I would have had the sense to turn it off. And if I didn’t know what to say or how to position my company’s messaging in the midst of it all (can a universal prayer for our troops on heightened alert around the world offend anyone!?) I would have just remained silent. Whether in person or via a social media stream, sometimes, that is best.

    So thanks for your selflessness in putting your goals on hold for the rest of us. You are the truly authentic queen of social media, my friend.

  • @HowieSPM @johnfalchetto For sure, mate. I’d rather be slow and sure than fast and false. 🙂

  • JulioRVarela

    It is amazing the spread and speed of information

  • jono.smith

    @EricaAllison, how exactly were the “traditional new outlets a big fat Fail?” Examples, please.

    This is a classic example of talking Twitter’s over-importance into existence. If Twitter had been offline last night, what impact would that have had on the OBL story? IMHO, none. As @JayDolan observed, there was as much false information on Twitter as there was fact.

    I love Twitter; I think it’s great at times. But I’m not sure why we’ve invented this need to pit it against what @FrankDickinson calls “the old, tried ways of communication and interaction.”

  • EdwardMBury

    A point of clarification to this excellent post. There were three major events in the past few days. Regardless of your religious beliefs, the beatification of John Paul II, which brought 1 million people together to recognize one man, ranks as big news.

  • TheJackB

    I watched President Obama speak and so did my kids. Afterwards I had a long talk with my children about who OBL was and why we killed him. It was painful to see the concern in their eyes and listen to them wonder why someone would murder moms and dads.

    I checked Twitter, the news and FB on and off all night long and marveled at what came through all of this.

    And then I blogged about it all and wondered a little bit about how different the world our kids are growing up in from the one in which we did.

  • kamkansas

    MimiMerideth, I totally agree — I was very bothered last night by the automated tweets and blog posts. People shouldn’t schedule tweets/posts and then completely disengage from social media during that time because it can make them look ridiculous or incredibly insensitive. They should have been monitoring events enough last night to stop any automation immediately.

    That being said, I didn’t like the endless speculation on Twitter AND CNN before President Obama spoke. As Lisa Gerber said, CNN was just filling the time with fluff, and there were jokes and speculation and false information flying all over Twitter. I just wanted to hear the president speak. As a journalist who helped cover the 9/11 attacks, I wanted the actual news. Last night brought back many emotions from the tragedies of 9/11, the grief of the families, the troops who have fought (and are still fighting) so bravely and sacrificed for our country.

    I didn’t trust the “news” that was coming from Twitter unless it was from Anderson Cooper or one of the many breaking news networks that I follow. I wanted confirmed information, not hype.

    On Sept. 11, 2001, when I got home from the newsroom at about 2 a.m., it was the first moment of quiet I’d had all day, and the weight of the tragedy finally sunk in. I sat on my couch in the dark and sobbed for the families of those who had just lost loved ones so senselessly and suddenly. Last night, I shed tears again for those same families, for our troops, for our country. I did use Twitter then to communicate and connect with others in my network, and that was helpful.

    So in the end, traditional media gave me the news I wanted (the president’s address, the scenes outside the White House and Ground Zero) and Twitter gave many of us an outlet for our feelings and sentiments after we had the news. Next time there’s big news brewing, I’ll probably just keep the TV muted until the event or announcement actually happens, and I won’t follow Twitter until we know the facts. That’s just my style. I guess I’ll always have some newspaper ink running through my veins even though I’m in PR now.

  • bdorman264

    @HowieSPM @ginidietrich Public Enemy vs NWA who’s going to win the ‘pimpin’ Spin Sucks Pro war?

  • MimiMeredith

    @TheJackB That was a GREAT post. I haven’t been able to articulate much of what is in my heart as a parent of three, and a citizen of the world. You did so beautifully. Here’s the link in the event other folks in Giniland would like to read along

  • @MimiMeredith @TheJackB It was a great post, Jack! Thanks, Mimi for sharing the link here. I just RT’d it!

  • @jono.smith Hi Jono! To your question, let me offer clarification and a reminder to myself to never push ‘post comment’ in haste! My failure remark has more to do with the speed with which the news was delivered, than with the accuracy. As @johnfalchetto and @JayDolan point out, there are false statements and issues with accuracy found throughout the twitter streams. Re: my reference, I was frustrated with the wait time – call me impatient, but I learned what I needed to know from the folks prepping me for Obama’s speech and felt no need to hang around and wait for the President to finish tweaking his speech, plus I was really tired and wanted to go to bed. I did in fact get lots of good info (supposedly true) from NPR this morning and then from additional print sources like the Fast Company article @Brankica references below, of which their entire article was focused on the speed with which the story broke on Twitter, by someone inadvertently live-streaming the story. I’m not sure I’m getting the whole new media against old media rivalry argument, but more of a recognition that we’re entering into a new world where news can and does come from the likes of Twitter and can be used as sources for our more traditional news outlets. Thanks for bringing the point up and allowing me to clarify.

  • TheJackB

    Thank you both. I appreciate it.

  • 40deuce

    Awesome stuff Gini! You may also want to take a look at a post I did for the Sysomos blog that looks at actual numbers and how quickly the word about Bin Laden spread through social media at

  • mdbarber

    Great post Gini. Last night was amazing for all of us. I also followed on both Twitter and the TV news. It’s interesting to see the comments about not waiting for the formal announcement. I wonder how much of that has to do with the lateness of the hour. Here, the news started rolling at 6:30 PM and we waited along with others for the President’s speech.

    I understand why folks on the East Coast didn’t wait for the President as he was an hour plus later than expected and the media definitely filled the time with fluff. But…the President’s speech was wonderfully poignant and I hope everyone has listened in its entirety. Twitter does regularly provide news before traditional media but 140 characters does not tell the entire story and that’s especially evident in this case.

  • ParkRidgeDDS

    Excellent post…I was on my iPad last night and had FB open while TV was providing background noise…suddenly there was a lot of activity on FB status updates, first about an upcoming press conference by President Obama that referenced national security and then, within minutes, the status updates changed quickly to Osama is dead. I had ABC on the TV at the time and, while Facebook and Twitter were actively chirping about Osama’s death, nothing had been mentioned on TV initially. I called to Tony (yes, it’s true, as compatible as we are, our TV watching habits are completely polar) to tell him I think Osama is dead and he couldn’t figure out how I might know that…I told him…social media of course. About five minutes later ABC finally broke into regular programming. I SO agree with you on the power, impact and effectiveness of social media…

  • Petya

    Great text, Gini! Social media is changing not only the mainstream media but the world, the way people communicate and interact in general. We witnessed this not only the last 3 days but during the disaster in Japan as well. In Bulgaria, for example, a lot of media outlets contacted different people living in Japan via social media channels and presented their personal stories. Pro-active people with energy and wide range of interests show great potential in social media usage and hence provoke big changes. It’s getting more and more interesting to see what’s the next stage of the social media revolution.

  • @TheJackB interesting. we take for granted that everyone is so close to it. It doesn’t seem like it happened that long ago! I’m not a parent, but those are interesting issues that need to be addressed, and your comment moved me.

  • C_Pappas

    Actually we had 3 major events. Mariah Carey and Nick Cannon had their twins on Saturday. In all seriousness, I am a late arriver to the Twitter party (just started in September of last year) and now know a lot more than my friends and co-workers just by listening. Its amazing where we turn to get the truth and I think its interesting that your instinct was to go to Twitter to get the real scoop.

  • janbeery

    A Big day for the US! 10 years ago our oldest son joined the military after 911 and further became an Army Ranger, all to help capture this man and help protect us all. Now onward with yet another gov’t agency to continue protecting all of us from terrorism.

    Our youngest joined the military 8 years ago for the same reasons and we’ve almost lost him to terrorist activity on more occasions then I care to count. He’s now redeploying in another week. To say this is a day I am proud to be an American is an understatement. Proud to be a military Mom, indescribable!

    Social Media is how our troops from Fort Hood first found out about the terrorist who murdered troops on Post while they were in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    The first place I went to find out what was going on in the news was social media. Then turned on FOX (Heraldo was a turn off! deep sigh)

    People have a voice and it’s being heard immediately. I saw a post of ecstatic New Yorker’s heading for ground zero. Tweets from the white house, the military, CNN, FOX, etc. It’s a beautiful thing that won’t go away, will continue to evolve and grow.

    For today, I choose to boast about my pride to be an American and happy to shout it across the social media platform!

  • @janbeery I triple like this comment!!! I applaud you and your family for the sacrifices you make for us all on a regular basis.

  • janbeery

    @EricaAllison Thank you Erica. I appreciate your support. Our armed forces and families are great men and women.

  • KarenBice

    Great post, Gini. My 23 year old son is a Marine stationed in Japan who could be deployed to Afghanistan any time. He wants to go. He’s watched buddies be deployed and wants to be with them. I try to be strong over this, but it isn’t easy when I read the story of military personnel who are killed or wounded, so I wuss out at times. I’ve learned to limit my military reading so I can carry out my normal routine. I am grateful to Obama and all involved for bringing OBL to justice. And I’ve learned that the military has a strong , professional social media presence so I can stay informed more about my son, as he has a tendency to leave a lot of details out when telling me things. 🙂 Twitter was rocking last night wasn’t it?

  • I read everything through Twitter before Obama even hit the podium to give his speech. Amazing how fast news spreads, eh…

  • HowieSPM

    @EricaAllison @MimiMeredith @TheJackB Not having children I could just imagine having to explain these things. Unfortunately our Government (and others) do things in the short term like supporting abusive dictators (Like the Shah or the Saudi Royals or Latin American Strongmen) because its not something us Citizens care to think about or because we benefit (cheap oil or stability now) but then long term we are the ones who suffer the pain and consequences (expensive oil, wars, instability, terrorism, etc).

    We all deserve the right to live free from fear of war or murders. But being the cynic like I always am don’t forget we have had 165,000 murders in the US since 9/11. None of those grieving families got plaques, memorials or a million $$ (unless they had boo-coo insurance) and almost all have been forgotten. Which is something our kids need to know because we have been unable to stop ourselves from killing each other and it needs to stop. Five 9/11’s per year and I am ashamed at my country that while we allow this we gaze elsewhere.

  • HowieSPM

    @bdorman264 @ginidietrich LOL I actually am more a NWAster but since I started with What Time is It I thought of Flava’s big clock. Doesn’t he have back problems by now? LOL

  • TheJackB

    @HowieSPM @EricaAllison @MimiMeredith I have thought about this a lot. One of my best friends died at 29 from a brain tumor. Another friend’s father was murdered when she was 13 and two years ago three of my friends died.

    The three that died were all 40. Two were mothers (two different cancers) and the man had an aneurysm.

    I don’t try to explain why bad things happen but I do talk about what to do afterwards. The people that I mentioned weren’t forgotten but they didn’t get national attention. Their families have a loss that will never be rectified but it is different from 9/11 because that is a collective loss.

    There are a lot of things that I wish that we did differently. I wish that money didn’t motivate people to do good/bad but it does. That is part of why countries don’t have friends, they have interests.

    I hate knowing that some of the money I pay for gas funds terrorists. It irritates me that few people vote and that few understand basic civics.

    I am getting killed trying to pay for private school. I pay through the nose for healthcare for my family etc.

    My story isn’t all that different from many. But the one thing that I can do is teach my kids to give back. We talk about giving back locally. We talk about how to help here in LA. Doesn’t mean that we ignore Alabama, Japan or Haiti…but sometimes that local focus makes an enormous difference.

    And we also talk about writing our gov’t. The kids have written to our senators. They have written to President Obama.

    I got on this while they are young so that they would learn and remember that change doesn’t happen overnight and that sometimes you have to push.

    Sorry for the long comment- I probably should have written this on my blog. Anyway, if we want to see change we have to make it happen because if no one pushes than nothing happens.

  • MimiMeredith

    @TheJackB @HowieSPM @EricaAllison I loved this “long” comment. I think these conversations are important ones to have with one another and with our children. A friend once said, “The world gets better and better; and worse and worse.” I think through awareness and our pushing, as you call it Howie, we can seek a sense of balance and understanding. Knowing the lyrics to School House Rocks songs is a good beginning!

  • MimiMeredith

    @TheJackB @HowieSPM @EricaAllison this “long” comment. I think these conversations are important ones to have with one another and with our children. A friend once said, “The world gets better and better; and worse and worse.” I think through awareness and our pushing, as you call it Jack, we can seek a sense of balance and understanding. Knowing the lyrics to School House Rocks songs is a good beginning!

  • ginidietrich

    Whoa. What a day! I’m headed to read through all of your comments now.

  • ginidietrich

    @KenMueller You know I don’t mind one bit! It adds value to the conversation.

  • ginidietrich

    @HowieSPM @bdorman264 I’m really tired, so I have an excuse. But I have NO IDEA what the two of you are talking about.

  • KenMueller

    @ginidietrich well, I knew you wouldn’t mind. but some people do. Just covering my bases!

  • ginidietrich

    @johnfalchetto We totally quote you in our Spin Sucks Pro communication tomorrow! I think there is a difference between how a story is spread now vs. even five years ago and fake personas and people telling stories for spin. I don’t know. I hope this isn’t like Elvis and we just have to assume he really is dead.

  • ginidietrich

    @JayDolan I thought some of the tweets were pretty funny. I guess you learn to filter out what seems believable vs. not.

  • KenMueller

    @ginidietrich @johnfalchetto Elvis is dead?!?!?!?!?!

  • ginidietrich

    @patrickreyes Thanks! Almost live. Not quite. Almost.

  • ginidietrich

    @HowieSPM @johnfalchetto I don’t think this is about who finds out more quickly. It’s about the shift in how the information is distributed. Two years ago, CNN NEVER would have tweeted something. Now they’re on the top of the list. It’s a shift in how we communicate. Big time.

  • ginidietrich

    @3HatsComm @Lisa Gerber You mean, you didn’t like, “We first learned about OBL on 9/11?” Come on, CNN!

  • ginidietrich

    @KenMueller No, no. He’s alive and well.

  • bdorman264

    @ginidietrich @HowieSPM Trust me, that’s one road you don’t want to go down. If you start understanding what Howie and I are talking about, that’s a dark road indeed…………:)

  • ginidietrich

    @3HatsComm @HowieSPM Thanks! I went to blog about something else, but it was all I could think about. And, when you blog at 5 a.m., you typically beat everyone else. 🙂

  • ginidietrich

    @EricaAllison To throw in another debate point, I’m quite sickened by the way we’re behaving over taking a man’s life. Did he deserve it? Absolutely! But to say “kill him” vs. capture him. It’s a disgrace.

  • ginidietrich

    @KDillabough That’s the nicest thing anyone has ever said to me!

  • ginidietrich

    @DannyBrown I agree the revolution has already been here…it’s nice traditional media have gone from not recognizing it to using it in two short years.

  • HowieSPM

    @TheJackB @EricaAllison @MimiMeredith Jack awesome response. I know the people here aren’t the ones I/We need to talk to about this stuff. Because we are all patriotic love our country and love this earth and people.

    I used to travel a lot for a sales job and was amazed at the bubbles people live in and I get trying to make it and survive thing. But I was thinking about the ‘how young is too young to have this talk’ and I realized the essence of ‘Do unto others’ is never too early because often they can bully or be bullied at scary young ages.

    I remember the overweight kid in first grade I was making fun of. He put his gum in my hair. it needed to be cut out. I cried. My folks said ‘What did you expect would happen?’ LOL

  • ginidietrich

    @MimiMeredith I really thought about not blogging at all, but then decided there is a lesson in here. I’m appreciative you thought so too.

  • HowieSPM

    @TheJackB @EricaAllison @MimiMeredith BTW Jack I am telling @ginidietrich on you. I thought she had all the spots filled for good smart nice people who don’t like spin. lol

  • ginidietrich

    @jono.smith I hope you didn’t take my blog post as an example of over-talking Twitter’s importance. I simply was stating the speed at which technology spreads the news and how we’ve all become citizen journalists. I don’t think relying on people to find and tell the news is responsible. But it is pretty freaking incredible how much things have changed in two years.

    P.S. Really good seeing you here!

  • @ginidietrich I am with you on that one. I have real issues explaining to my son about not only that we killed him, but that we dumped his body in the Indian Ocean somewhere. I’m conflicted to say the least.

  • ginidietrich

    @TheJackB One of the first things out of my mouth (after, “I can’t believe he’s upstaging my launch!”) was how disgusting it is at the celebration over killing a man. Like I said to @EricaAllison he absolutely deserved to die. But that doesn’t mean we are the ones to determine his death.

  • ginidietrich

    @kamkansas This is a very thoughtful response and gives us great insight into you. Thank you.

  • ginidietrich

    @40deuce I will! Thank you!

  • ginidietrich

    @mdbarber I agree Twitter doesn’t tell the whole story. It’s just fascinating, to me, how quickly social media has helped shape the events of our world.

  • @HowieSPM @TheJackB @MimiMeredith I had gum in my hair once and all over my Holly Hobbie flannel night gown, precisely as my mother predicted when I went to bed that night. I also had it cut out of my hair.

    You’re right, Howie, the do unto others lesson is a good starting point. This came up for us already at the ripe old age of 8. My son had gotten into trouble for playground ‘fighting’ to the point that when he was bullied on a bus ride home, he didn’t do a thing – he was afraid he’d get in trouble. Very confusing for young ones about when it’s ok to defend yourself and when it’s ‘play’.

  • TheJackB

    @ginidietrich @EricaAllison I don’t think that most people saw him as a person. He had become more of a symbol and it made it easier to strip him of his humanity. That being said, I confess that I hope he suffered. I left that last part out of my conversation with the kids.

  • ginidietrich

    @ParkRidgeDDS You were up late! 🙂 So you found out about before ABC even broke in?! Wow.

  • ginidietrich

    @C_Pappas HAHAHAHAH! LOL!

  • ginidietrich

    @Petya Great point about Japan. And in Alabama here this past week. It’s definitely shaping the conversation. For good or for bad.

  • ginidietrich

    @janbeery I too applaud the boys, and your family for the sacrifices you’re making. Especially knowing about a missed wedding.

  • ginidietrich

    @RicardoBueno Eh is right!

  • ginidietrich

    @KarenBice I can imagine, like @janbeery , it’s very difficult to stay positive when we read about so many tragedies with our troops. Much love to you and your son!

  • mdbarber

    @ginidietrich I completely agree. Last night was fascinating. It was also interesting how impatient people were when two years before we would never have been so. However, we probably would have wondered why the media was just blathering. I don’t understand why they just didn’t go back to regular programming and come on when the president was ready to talk. Oh, what a night!

  • ginidietrich

    @EricaAllison Exactly. HOW do you explain that?! We teach our kids it’s a sin to kill and then this is the example. We could get into a political debate here. I suppose, instead, I should just go home. 🙂

  • ginidietrich

    @mdbarber And now I want to sing…oh what night! Late September back in 63.

  • @ginidietrich @TheJackB from the stories I heard this afternoon, families of 9/11 victims were struggling with the ‘party’ mood and reliving all that they went through so many years ago. I feel bad for them all over again. I think even though this is a symbolic closure for them, it’s a step towards closure.

  • TheJackB

    @EricaAllison @ginidietrich I hope so. In some ways it feels like there was a collective sigh of relief.

  • MimiMeredith

    @EricaAllison @HowieSPM @TheJackB I am a huge believer in “natural consequence” parenting and managing. But really…hair loss does not have to be the predictable out come of gum in your lovely locks, my friends! There are two great products: Goo Gone and, my personal favorite, peanut butter, that get that gum out lickety split! Or so I would tell my daughter as I was painstakingly rubbing it out of her hair. I know…it’s a far cry from the weighty issues of parenting and citizenship with which this thread began, but I just couldn’t resist offering my oh-so-helpful advice before any other harrowing hair loss stories occur!

  • @MimiMeredith @HowieSPM @TheJackB Sad thing is, my mom tried the peanut butter and STILL had to cut my hair. Maybe that’s why I’ve always had short hair! LOL

  • TheJackB

    @EricaAllison @HowieSPM @MimiMeredith Ah yes, play fighting. We have had that discussion. Sometimes I worry about our having become a “kinder,” “gentler” nation- the lines are so blurry. But I suppose that in many ways they are no blurrier now than when we were kids.

  • MimiMeredith

    @janbeery Jan, my niece just forwarded an email from her fiance who is stationed in Afghanistan. He said the spirits of his men were jubilant over the news from Pakistan, and they were seasoning two goats for a goat-roast and celebration they had planned for tonight. I love this young man as if he was already in our family. I can’t imagine my heart carrying the concerns…and pride…that yours must for my two sons. Blessings to you and your sons who serve us.

  • TheJackB

    @ginidietrich FWIW, my kids and I talked about whether we have the right to determine when people should die.

  • janbeery

    @ginidietrich thanks Gini. Our troops morale is way up after our Seals accomplomplished their mission last night. We r still praying that SGT Fassl will be able to return and sing his sister down the aisle in August! Always have to think positive.

  • janbeery

    @MimiMeredith thanks Mimi. God Bless your daughter’s Fiance. When is he returning?

  • MimiMeredith

    @janbeery March 2012. They’ll be married in June 2012!

  • HowieSPM

    @ginidietrich did you ask our permission? 8) We took over when you were gone.

  • HowieSPM

    @MimiMeredith @EricaAllison @TheJackB But Mimi in 1974 was Goo Gone on the market?!!! if it was I am going to give my folks some grief! Now peanut butter we did have!

  • HowieSPM

    @ginidietrich @jono.smith Gini when you see your google alert assuming it combs my blog I used you as an example. You will just have to see if it was a good or bad one 8)

  • HowieSPM

    @JulioRVarela Did you see the smoke signals too?

  • HowieSPM

    @EricaAllison Erica you always eoncourage @ginidietrich that is why she is out of control. Blog rising in the rankings. New business divisions launching. Stop or she will be President in 2020.

  • MimiMeredith

    @EricaAllison @HowieSPM @TheJackB Oh my gosh! I can’t make myself leave this thread…I need help!! I just had to say to Erica: A) short hair is darling on you ; B) I bet you don’t go to bed with gum in your mouth anymore either and C) doesn’t Holly Hobbie still make you feel sentimental?

    And re: raising boys (in particular) in this age of zero tolerance, there is so much to consider. There is no one-size-fits-all approach. However, that is exactly the size of the response to any testosterone-based behavior. There was an interesting TEDTalk that opened my eyes to some startling statistics. You all might be interested:

  • HowieSPM

    @ginidietrich @johnfalchetto You might not think its a contest to say who had the news first but if you saw some of the tweets from the social media talking heads you would think that was what this was all about. Ok I was generalizing but I am waiting for the Mashable and Industry Trade News emails. You just wait!

  • TheJackB

    @HowieSPM @MimiMeredith @EricaAllison In ’74 I was the boy who put gum in my sisters’ hair. I remember peanut butter and yelling but not much more. 😉

  • HowieSPM

    @KenMueller @ginidietrich @johnfalchetto My client sells an Elvis. So he is still around. He is made of two warm all natural peanut butter cookies sandwiching freshly made all natural banana ice cream with real banana and apple wood smoked brown sugar candied bacon pieces on top.

  • janbeery

    @TheJackB I have 3 children. A daughter between two boys. Our children were raised to be responsible and make a difference. Defend freedom, do the right thing and give back. When 911 happened, my oldest was in college and was absolutely pacing livid! I told him to focus and finish school. He just completed 8 years with the US Army as a Captain, Ranger tabbed with his MBA. now in DC transitioning to a gov’t agency job. Our youngest is a Tank Commander with the US Army, a SGT with 1st CAV. Has 3 more ya to his service of 10 yrs. We are a strong military family and our sons have sacrificed a lot. They each have done some amazing things with our youngest a purple heart recipient. Although you’ll never him share that with you. He also transported Bob Woodrov when he was seriously wounded, they are true heroes in so many ways. You’re doing the right things with your children. They’re learning to take responsibility for their country and make a difference. Mine now range in age from 25-30 yrs. What a great gift you re giving them, preparing them for life. Well done,

  • HowieSPM

    @ginidietrich @Brankica @Lisa Gerber I bashed on someone who stated Twitter won the speed contest last night before anyone could prove it and that was validation for Social Media superiority. Then blogged about it.

    Well I did the math. At peak Tweet time there was 20 million Tweets in one hour. Even if each tweet was just one person. In the scheme of the US or word population its a teeny segment. 10 million if in the US is only 3% of the population but I bet the number was less.

    Which means most people heard of this not from Twitter but elsewhere. But like the Mets Philly game where the crowd found out and started chanting USA during the game and the players had no clue. How many people in the stands would it take to get an SMS text, Twitter, or facebook contact for everyone else to get word of mouth? 10? 100? 1000? just curious.

  • TheJackB

    @janbeery Well we are very grateful for your family’s service and sacrifice. Clearly you did something right. We’re just trying to do the same.

  • @MimiMeredith @HowieSPM @TheJackB I still remember that Holly Hobbie night gown and I also know the words to School House Rock. Will look up the TEDTalk link tomorrow. Off to bed now…checking my kids first (for signs of gum:). Thanks for the great discussion!

  • Here is something funny for ya.

    I was having dinner with a friend and he got the news from his friend on Facebook. Then, approx 20 minutes later, Associated Press send him an alert informing him of the news. HELL-OH!!!

    AP was slower on the draw than some dude on Facebook? WTH?

    To me, that marked the death of traditional news forever.

  • Petya

    @ginidietrich I suppose it’s the same in Alabama, as you say. Citizen journalism is evolving.

  • KDillabough

    @ginidietrich My pleasure Gini, to give credit where credit is due:)

  • 3HatsComm

    @HowieSPM @ginidietrich Noticed that, been a lot of good discussions… interesting reading.

  • @HowieSPM @ginidietrich Ha! Sorry, I had to go night-night and missed that last comment!

    Howie, don’t you know, it’s all part of the plan. Gini and I cooked this up months ago…I’d become the ‘confederate’ that plants herself throughout the web, using video and comments to tout Gini’s greatness…laying the groundwork for 2020. You too can be part of the job…think of it as Ocean’s 14, we’ll grab 12 more people to work on it.

  • janbeery

    @MimiMeredith That’s awesome. Welcome to the world of military families!

  • janbeery

    @KarenBice Karen, God Bless your son. I know how that is with our troops eager to go with their buddies. You’re right about needing to focus on the day to day activities of life. This is their job and what they have chosen to do. It’s honorable and dangerous so we support them, cover them in prayer and wait for their return.

    If you ever need support, now you know how to find a fellow military mom, feel free to reach out to me. Been in this game a long time. My oldest is taking on a new role that is highly dangerous with our government. Deep sigh! Special forces guys tend to stay on that track.

  • janbeery

    @TheJackB You already are. What a great foundation you’re providing them. You’re preparing them responsibly for life. That’s awesome. Well done!

    Thank you for your kind words. For us, it’s just another day in the life. 😉

  • @ginidietrich I didn’t. I was just amazed how quickly some of the commenters were over-hyping Twitter’s importance in the OBL story. Particularly given the amount of misinformation that was being spread on Twitter (i.e.,

  • @HowieSPM what’s the URL?

  • Success4Coaches

    Talk about picking your timing! Launching Spin Sucks Pro on the coat tails of the Royal Wedding and then the end of Bin Laden with Twitter so much in the news. I am impressed!

  • KarenBice

    @janbeery Thanks Jan! Yes, it’s hard being in this role. I wish there was a stronger social media presence for military parents. There’s a Marine Parents page on FB, but it’s not current. The one time I commented on it, there was no response. I’ve connected to another military mom via Twitter which has helped. Her son is a Army Iraq vet. When I start wussing out, I contact her. 🙂 If you’re on Twitter, look me up at karenbice . My best wishes to you and your family. Semper Fi.

  • KarenBice

    @dino_dogan I found out via a ABC text message saying that OBL had been killed a week ago. I immediately went to Twitter and FB. Twitter had more news compared to FB, but I’m only following a few FB news pages.

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