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Technological advances have resulted in social media becoming an important tool to improve disaster response. The ease-of-use and relatively low cost makes social media applications an effective way to disseminate information during or following a disaster, and allows for those affected by a disaster to be in touch with disaster relief organizations, friends and family. Information transmitted via these applications can also be used by emergency teams to determine the scale of the disaster and pinpoint specific locations in affected areas, resulting in swift and effective action. It can also be used to quickly notify a large number of people about distribution sites, shelter areas, evacuation zones, etc. Facebook and Twitter are two commonly used social media applications used during disaster situations, while new micro-blogging applications are emerging as effective platforms for volunteers to organize relief efforts. Data received from social media can provide important information about the behaviour of affected citizens and be used to improve disaster risk management in the future.…

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Technology Compendium