Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Boston firefighters were able to come to terms with city officials recently after the two had been on opposite ends for some time. While the city has to look at the settlement as a win the true winners are firefighters and citizens who, through the use of a very persistent campaign via Twitter, Facebook and the local media, came out on top.
Jakes in the Hub were having difficulty getting their message out about the true numbers relating to an arbitrators decision to award firefighters raises from previous years. IAFF Local 718 began using Twitter and Facebook to create support among citizens and activists.
Twitter, growing at an unheard of rate, and Facebook, with over half a billion members, are untapped resources for firefighters looking to spread the truth about budget fights, staffing and departmental messages.
Media is evolving rapidly. What was the "it" thing typically goes away in about 18 months. Fire departments wanting to get messages out have now skipped blogging to use Twitter and Facebook.
In 2011 something new will pop up capable of "transforming" information delivery. It's the nature of internet in the wild and won't slow down. Those who think they can control it are sadly mistaken. Even in oppressive countries the desire for every citizen to speak their mind is fast becoming an issue government can't handle.
As has been stated this can be good or bad. Fire departments and firefighters can now communicate directly with the customer and voter. This is a tremendous power shift.
On a different note in the next 12 days we will remember the nine men who perished on June 18, 2007 in the Sofa Super Store Fire and I would like to ask everyone to remember Danny Pujdak, who died just three days after the nine brothers perished in Charleston. Danny was an FDNY firefighter.