“Its over. The #hijacker arrested. #LarnacaAirport # Egyptair” was the tweet that Cyprus Foreign Ministry sent out after a plane was hijacked this morning. An EgyptAir plane carrying 55 passengers from Borg El Arab airport in Alexandria to Cairo was hijacked and diverted to Larnaca in Cyprus on Tuesday morning. The hijacker was arrested. Later on in the day the Ministry sent out another tweet releasing the hijacker’s name.
Just after 9 a.m. Egypt time, EgyptAir revealed some information on Twitter as well, tweeting negotiations with a hijacker resulted in the release of all passengers except crew and four foreigners.
Cypriot president Nicos Anastasiades said the hijacker wanted to see his former wife, which is why he ruled out terrorism as a motive for taking over the plane. Terrorism or not, this was a huge national story and it seems like it was revealed on Twitter even before any traditional news outlets could report it. That’s a good thing right? You be the judge.
It used to be just the news. Whether you were waiting to watch the scheduled 5 o’clock evening news or the news station abruptly interrupted the show you were watching with an important alert. It’s somewhat different these days. Many people get their national news from social media. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, or another site that you prefer, social media has become totally mainstream. It’s literally everywhere. With technology being so fast and so prevalent, many people are going to get their news from it whether they like it or not. With Tweets, Facebook posts, and even links and hashtags running on the bottom on your television screen, social media is making a huge impact everywhere on everyone and everything.
While some “old school” people still prefer their printed newspapers or favorite morning news show, social media is gradually taking the places of those outlets. Well maybe not taking the place of them yet, but social media seems to be getting the news out faster than you can check your inbox. Most people don’t even have to log on to anything for an update, for they get immediate alerts to their phone. One particular region may get access to breaking news quicker than somewhere across the pond, but just one little click of a button and a friend can send you that info before it’s revealed on one of your news outlets.
The speed, content urgency and massive connections between people and internet users has made social media extremely affective for media and businesses. You’re always going to have those people that don’t like this new way of sharing news or criticize it because it somehow takes away business from them, but like it or not it’s here to stay. Whether you look at it as positive or negative, its phenomenal impact is hard to ignore. Critics need to get onboard with this way of networking and news sharing. The pros clearly outweigh the cons in a big enough way that I think everyone should embrace this phenomenon, realizing that it’s obviously more helpful than crippling to us.