Winter storms now have names? Thanks social media.

http://mashable.com/2012/11/08/winter-storm-names/

(sigh) I suppose I should have stopped being shocked by anything when I got my first text message from my father a few months ago. It read simply, “I’m onto the text messaging.” So why should I now be surprised when Dad’s favorite television channel is, at least temporarily, becoming the focal point of the social media world? Referred to by my father and many other exciting middle aged friends of his as “the channel,” the station I’m referring to is of course The Weather Channel.

Proving that people will truly talk about anything online (to now include the weather) to avoid face to face conversation anymore, pending weather phenomenon have occasionally found themselves the focal point of social media. The article above talks about why The Weather Channel states that it has begun naming winter storms in the same fashion that we are accustomed to with tropical ones in the summer/fall. They say that “In addition to providing information about significant winter storms by referring to them by name, the name itself will make communication and information sharing in the constantly expanding world of social media much easier.”

Of course you’re probably wondering exactly what kind of important communication and information will be spread about these winter storms. I won’t claim to be a part of the solution here…if anything, I am the problem. The attached picture was taken roughly 18 hours ago when I was coming home from work and uploaded it to instagram. As with any work cancelling weather phenomenon, this blizzard had all the makings of a fine venue to concoct a crock pot soup, as well as a potential inspiration for the flurricane party I’ve been wanting to have for entirely too long. Thanks to The Weather Channel, I can now share my own personal blizzard preparedness kit with people I’ve never even met before by simply attaching the hashtag of #Nemo on there.

Question for class: What is the weather channel’s real motivation by beginning to name these storms? Is it to make it easier to organize information about winter storms and lump it under one hashtag? If it is, I sure hope no one is counting on a picture of my sixer of Big Moose Ale to bring them any great guidance on what to do in the event of avalanche or if basketball practice is cancelled this afternoon.

Stay toasty out there. #nemohurtmyliver

Storm preparations

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