On the East Coast in particular, news of Hurricane Sandy has largely dominated social media channels, including Twitter, Reddit and–of course–Facebook. In fact, a rep for Facebook has sent Betabeat some statistics that show just how intense the chatter on the platform has been over the last few days.
As soon as word of Hurricane Sandy began to spread, Reddit immediately sprung into action, creating the r/Sandy subreddit which now boasts over 3,000 readers. The forum is full of pictures of storm damage, eery tips and of course memes. But one particular post caught our eye: a Redditor named KillerKittenMittens created a site that may be helpful to those attempting to communicate messages about Sandy to the web should their wifi or cell phone data plans go out.
Leave it to New York’s chattering tech class: in the middle of one of the worst storms New York has seen, techies are taking to their Twitter accounts to live-tweet the ensuing madness. Foursquare cofounder Dennis Crowley has been tweeting and retweeting dispatches about the storm since yesterday, establishing himself as an important source on East Village hurricane news. Meanwhile, Business Insider’s Henry Blodget has taken the #slatepitches tact. Below are some of our favorite hurricane tweets.
With the East Coast largely barricaded inside their homes burning through hastily assembled stockpiles of cookies and liquor, there’s one thing left to do: make memes. (For as long as the power stays on, anyway.) The storm already has a dedicated page on Know Your Meme, and it seems parody accounts are cropping up by the second.
Click through for a roundup of hurriedly created hurricane-related memes, from the dedicated jokes to the special editions of old Internet standbys.
Goooood Morning Silicon Alley!
Instacane, a website that aggregates images posted to Instagram with hashtags related to Hurricane Sandy, is back up and running. Created last year by New York Times R&D software architect Peter Ng and now-Facebook engineer Chris Ackermann to chronicle images of Hurricane Irene, it’s been flooded once more by people snapping their way through Hurricane Sandy. The site has quickly become a visual portfolio of a dangerous hurricane that’s said to be barreling straight for New York and New Jersey.
This is a guest post from Gary Sharma (aka “The Guy with the Red Tie”), founder and CEO of GarysGuide and proud owner of a whole bunch of black suits, white shirts and, at last count, over 40 red ties. You can reach him at gary [at] garysguide.com.
Batten down the hatches. Stock up on the liquor (and food). Bring out the candles and flashlights. Because Hurricane Sandy (a.k.a. #frankenstorm) is almost upon us. And now, at almost a thousand miles wide, it definitely has our attention. Hopefully by this time y’all are safely at home (and not still slumming in Zone A) with eyes glued to the twenty-four-hour news coverage, watching weathermen expound on “cones” and “surges.”
As you know, the MTA has shut down all subway and buses, and pretty much every event on Monday has been cancelled or postponed including AllThingsD’s Dive Into Mobile conference, Google’s Android event, Facebook’s engineering open house and our own Big Apple Smackdown Silicon Alley ping-pong tournament (which will be re-scheduled).
At this time, the Tuesday events (and the rest of the week) seem uncertain too. They’re still listed below, but I’d highly recommend you confirm first with the event organizers. In the mean time, stay safe, keep your fingers crossed that the storm turns out to be a mild one and don’t forget to check Miguel Bloombito’s Twitter feed for the latest updates!
The wind is already whipping and New Yorkers, having bought up all the bottled water and discount Halloween candy they could find, are ready to hole up in their apartment for the next two days. It’s not like you can hop on the ACE and go check out the scene at the waterfront, since the subway is shut down and all.
Luckily for anyone seeking a little vicarious storm-chasing, there’s Livestream. The startup has installed a camera on the roof of its Chelsea HQ and will be broadcasting the storm’s transit across downtown on what they’ve dubbed #SandyCam.
“We just decided to scramble everybody, and they’ll be working and locking in with food and maybe even sleeping in the office Monday and Tuesday,” Livestream CEO Max Haot told Betabeat. Now that’s dedication.
Better charge your electronics: Thousands are already without electricity. [Boston Globe]
The MTA took to its Flickr account to chronicle the slow process of shutting down and locking up every last station in the public transportation system. [Flickr]
Our own colleagues are liveblogging the storm here. [New York Observer]
In an example tailor-made to remind us all how much easier we’ve got it in the age of livestreams and weather apps and early warning systems, the 17-person crew of a replica HMS Bounty was forced to abandon ship last night off the coast of North Carolina. [NBC News]
With mass transit closed and dangerous storm surges set to wallop the city, New York startups aren’t messing around when it comes to hurricane prep. Most, like Usablenet, Kickstarter, HowAboutWe and SideTour, are urging employees to work from home due to the closure of the MTA system.
“We have a simple rule of thumb that if the subways are shut down, the office is closed and people can work from home,” Onswipe CEO Jason Baptiste told Betabeat over email. “A few of us are actually crashing here over the weekend – myself and a few engineers. We built the place to be like a home, so it’s a great place to be stuck for a few days :).”
“For those that are staying here, we have ample food, beverage, and entertainment. More iPads than flashlights,” he added.
Hey, we’re sure there’s a flashlight app.