A ten year and twelve year old girl got lost in a stormwater drain in Adelaide, Australia earlier this week. Rather than calling the police, the girls updated their Facebook status. The girls did not feel any real danger, but it was still foolish to update their Facebook status instead of calling 000 (911 equivalent in the U.S.).
The girls’ status said that they were lost in a stormwater drain on Honeypot Road at Hackham in the suburbs of Adelaide. Fortunately one of their friends noticed the status message and called the appropriate authorities to handle the situation. The girls eventually were rescued.
The reason why this news story was hyped up is because it poses the question about whether engaging in social media is the right idea when in danger. There are a plethora of news stories that are published on a regular basis about people tweeting or writing Facebook statuses after being injured or when in danger.
For example, back in June Perez Hilton tweeted that the lead singer of the Black Eyed Peas punched him and asked his followers to call the police. And back in March Revision3 COO David Prager wrote that a stranger was trying to break into his house. Prager even took the time to get the incident on webcam and publish it on UStream.