SMEM vs. Cabin Fever

Millions of people have been affected by the blizzard that hit the U.S. Mid-Atlantic region during the weekend, with the storm’s after-effects still being felt days after the last snowflake fell. Here, in Virginia’s Hampton Roads region, schools and local government offices are closed, hazardous driving conditions persist on secondary roads and emergency managers are busy […]

“Run Hide Fight”: #SMEM During the Ohio State University Attack

When a then-unidentified man used his vehicle as a weapon on the campus of the Ohio State University Monday, then got out of it and attacked people with a knife, authorities acted quickly: both the first responders who stopped the violence within minutes and school officials responsible for ensuring the safety of students, faculty, staff […]

How to Build a Virtual Toolbox for Disaster Response

If the blog had a “Free Bird” or – I dunno – “Margaritaville?” this year, it was this piece, coming in at #1 in our countdown of the Top 10 Most Read Pieces of 2015. Not necessarily a “one-hit wonder” kind of thing – more of a “show closer.” I wrote a slightly different version of […]

Social Media and Crisis: 6 Things You Should Do, 2 You Shouldn’t

Hey ho! Let’s go! Hey ho! Let’s go! We’re at #4 (that’s not a hashtag, that’s just a “number sign” [and then the number that comes after it]) in our countdown of the Top 10 Most Read Pieces of 2015 on the ol’ #CrisisComms blog (that. that was a hashtag). Have you ever read a […]

Metrics for Discovering Your Reach on Twitter

I just did the math, and Paul and I – combined – regularly use about 15 social media accounts, spread out amongst five different platforms (almost makes me feel exhausted to see those numbers on the screen, but we regulate use!). We contribute to corporate accounts, maintain personal accounts to interact with friends and family, […]

How to Build a Virtual Toolbox for Disaster Response

Being a public information officer for an organization with a diverse array of nearly a dozen distinct missions made every day exciting. On any given day, I might be talking to the media and stakeholders about maritime search and rescue and law enforcement, chemical and petroleum environmental pollution response or how icebergs in the North […]

Disaster Response; the Public Info Officer’s Perspective (Part 3)

This is the third entry in a three-part series on what it’s like being deployed as a crisis incident public information officer. The first entry covered the preparatory phase of incident response operations, and the second covered what it’s like once on-scene at an incident. This entry focuses on lessons learned from the incident. What […]