Bin Laden’s Death, Mobile and Social

In the wake of bin Laden’s death it is worth reflecting on how consumers learned about the incident which was first live reported by Sohaib Athar – an unsuspecting bin Laden neighbor who tweeted the fact that he heard a helicopter and a subsequent window-shaking bang – a rare event as he called it.

Later, a commenter @naqvi on Twitter made the connection to these events and the Obama press conference which confirmed what had happened.

Of course later – the hard news and analysis did come from the mainstream media (MSM) – with lots of commentary from the social world. GigaOm has thoughts on how social and the MSM are connected.

What is most interesting to me however is the cheering which took place at a baseball stadium when the crown learned about the bin Laden news – specifically there was TV coverage of how people in the crowd were scanning their cell phones for the news and sharing it with others in the crowd. The video below gives you a small idea of other coverage I have seen.

The concept of news circulating via social faster than TV is not something we haven’t discussed before – but this this stadium example of a large group learning about an important event via people at the center of informal social circle shows you how news dissemination and the web has evolved over the years.

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