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May 17, 2011
From the Crisis Front Lines...
For those of you with crisis communication responsibilities (in PR that's just about everyone in one way or another), we've come upon a treasure trove of crisis-related blogs. Gerald Baron on Crisis Comm led us to Bill Boyd's "It's Not My Emergency," and Bill's blog roll and list of favorite blogs puts you in touch with more handlers of dire events. There's lots of insights from the front lines among these sources.

As an example, though its "SOPs" are still evolving, social media is a steadily growing factor in crisis response. Chief Boyd asks (or implores}: "Will someone in Washington please make a decision on how SM fits within ICS (FEMA's Incident Command System)? Or at least provide guidelines that make sense? I know it is being worked on, but folks are clamoring for guidance."

And, "Elected officials must be educated about the power of SM BEFORE a disaster strikes. I think this will be a self correcting (stet) situation as more candidates embrace SM as part of their election campaigns. Until then, we need to show them how it's done (use Cory Booker for example)." (Newark's Mayor Cory Booker is prominent on Twitter and Facebook.)

A suggestion to Chief Boyd, though. His blog doesn't identify him. It's described as a "Crisis manager's brain dump (Not work related)," though of course it is. After some Googling, we're assuming he's Fire Chief Bill Boyd of Bellingham, Washington, though we could be mistaken.

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Doug Bedell has a background in journalism and PR and is the owner of Resource Relations LLC in Central PA, focusing on organizational and crisis communication. He’s the community manager of SimplyFair.net, a social network on fairness. On the Web, Doug’s at www.ResourceRelations.com. On Twitter, he’s @DougBeetle.
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