Thursday, May 13, 2010


New York quivers and quakes over possibility of retaliation

by Larry Geller

Poor New York. If someone forgets their lunchbox on the subway, it could lead to mass evacuation.

This first tweet is just 20 minutes old, the second was a couple of days ago.


NYPD investigates suspicious car in lower Manhattan, sparking some evacuations near Union Square - BNO

NYPD evacuates parts of midtown, Times Square after reports of suspicious package being found 4:04 PM May 11th via BreakingNews Headquarters

Wanna shut things down as a prank? Just leave a bag of junk on the subway. I’ll bet that’s going to happen, maybe more than a few times.

Now, Twitter could be really useful in these situations. If the cops plan to shut down Times Square or Union Square, say, maybe they could just take a moment and tweet the info. Millions of New Yorkers’ phones will simultaneously beep as they receive the warning. Those in the affected area will know to evacuate, all by themselves. It could be quick, efficient and orderly.

In fact, there could be an iPhone app with a Google Maps mashup that plans an escape route or shows a way around the traffic snarl. It could be called BombScare.

New York will never be the same. The next bomb “scare” could always be the real thing. That could make the city into a nervous, quivering and jittery mass of humanity, knowing that at any time or place there could be retaliation for civilian deaths in Afghanistan.

Perhaps that fear will move New Yorkers to advocate for an end to the endless war.

As these reports came in, I couldn’t help wondering if Osama bin Laden receives the tweets also and feels he has won.


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