“War and Tweets”: New America’s Take on Terrorism and Changing Media

New America published an article titled “War and Tweets: Terrorism in America in the Digital Age“, analyzing the American public’s reaction to terrorism in the context of social media and news media. The study is divided into five sections: “The Context: Terrorism, Public Reaction, and the Media,” “The Changing Media Environment: 1993-Present,” “2016 Orlando Nightclub Shooting,” “Community Impact and Electoral Consequences,” and “Conclusion and Recommendations: The Importance of Civic Resilience.”

Using Orlando as a case study for the importance of community resilience, the authors analyze the importance of leadership, public communications, citizen involvement, exercises and planning, responsible social media, and empowerment of local press. They also offer recommendations for a rapidly-changing society:

“Some things have not changed, however: the awful truth is that terrorism is often effective in generating publicity and provoking emotions and reactions. Civic resilience to terrorism should be a public policy priority and the responsibility of city governments, law enforcement officials, journalists, social media companies, and members of the public, who ultimately get to choose how they react to an attack.”

You can find out more about Social Media Use in Emergencies, Lone Wolf Terrorism, and Domestic Terrorism: Jihadist/Islamist in the Featured Topics section in the HSDL.