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Importance of local news during disaster

Posted by: | November 20, 2012 | No Comment |

Local news is often forgotten in the grand scheme of the media, with so much information available. Local news, however, is an extremely valuable asset, especially during disasters. This was seen during Hurricane Sandy, as those affected by the storm turned to local news stations to learn information important to them.

According to the National Association of Broadcasters, two organizations, Worldnow and Internet Broadcasting, told the NAB that between October 28 and October 30, local television stations within the wrath of Sandy witnessed up to 10.4 million unique visitors to their websites.

“This data surrounding Hurricane Sandy suggests that local TV station websites have become an equally important source of information. It’s a broadcast-broadband world, with millions of people either tuning in to local television stations or accessing similar ‘need-to-know’ information on TV stations’ websites in lifeline situations,” said Gordon Smith, NAB president.

Americans are increasingly  using their mobile devices to view local news sites during disasters.  WMAR-TV of Baltimore saw a 522 percentage in traffic on their mobile page on October 29 when Hurricane Sandy made landfall.

The increase in popularity of local news during disasters shows that people will always have a hunger for the news. This is especially true when danger is present and surprises could occur at any moment.


Photo Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons



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