Swine influenza is the first pandemic since the widespread sharing of information via the Internet. The last pandemic was the 1969 Hong Kong pandemic at which time the Internet did not exist. The amount of information relating to swine flu which is available on the Internet is huge (but unfortunately not all entirely accurate).
WordPress, Twitter, YouTube and the like are full of Swine Flu related content published by individuals. The Bookmarking and Sharing sites are also being inundated with Swine Flu related content. A quick search this morning for “swine flu” returned the following:
- Google: 2,750,000 search results
- WordPress: 5,929 search results
- YouTube: 5,120 search results
- Technorati: 10,095 search results (see the dynamic chart below which shows the number of posts containing the term ‘swine flu’ for the past few days):
There are all sorts of very cool ways that data from the various online resources is being shared for example:
- Google Maps is being used to relay the locations of reported cases.
- Widgets such as the one below which shows the latest news from the Center of Disease Control (CDC) are available to share information:
Information now travels very quickly and in many forms. In cases such as swine flu, my belief is that it is best to get information regarding serious events such as this from the authorities on such matters. In the case of swine flu, the World Health Organization website is great!