Virginia Tech Grieves Online

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Virginia Tech Grieves Online

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Posted by <a href="http://www.profy.com/profile/cyndy-aleo-carreira/">Cyndy Aleo-Carreira</a> on April 17th, 2007

I know that I speak for everyone here at Profy when I say that our thoughts are with the family and friends of the victims of yesterday&#39;s events at <a href="http://www.vt.edu/">Virginia Tech</a>.

The horror of yesterday will live in the hearts and minds of the Virginia Tech community, the United States, and much of the world for some time to come, but what moved me the most was the way in which what would have been a local, and somewhat national, event even a few years ago moved worldwide due to a global online community.

The first reports of what was happening on the VT campus came from students sending reports via their cell phones. Today, the grief of the VT community has moved online.

On the University&#39;s own <a href="http://www.vt.edu/tragedy/">website on the tragedy</a>, updates are presented in blog format, the Convocation held today was streamed live, and is available to students, faculty, and families as a podcast, as it contains information on resources available for counseling and information.

On <a href="http://www.livejournal.com">LiveJournal</a>, a professor shares his grief online, giving us a mere glimpse of the person (and student) that <a href="http://tekmagika.livejournal.com/672246.html">Reema Samaha</a> was.

On <a href="http://www.facebook.com">Facebook</a>, comments have been left on the pages of victims from friends as well as students at rival schools, and sorority sisters and fraternity brothers from other chapters.
<a href="http://www.myspace.com">MySpace</a> includes an &quot;official&quot; <a href="http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&amp;friendid=42548491">VT page</a>&nbsp;called HokieNation which has been updated with a VT emblem with wings and a cartoon showing anthropomorphic characters of other universities gathered around the VT character with the caption &quot;Today we are all Hokies.&quot; Many user icons of VT alums and students as well as people affiliated with the university, like radio stations that broadcast VT games have changed their avatars to a black ribbon with the VT emblem.

And comments have been left on articles ranging from blogs to news sites.

Twenty years ago, we&#39;d have seen this as a tragedy, watched the footage on CNN, and that would have been the end of it. In the age of Web 2.0, anyone with enough inclination and five minutes of time can reach out to those most closely affected by events and let them know how many people are thinking of them. Over 650 comments have been left on the HokieNation MySpace page alone in the past two days.

If Web 2.0 is remembered for nothing else, it will be remembered for giving us this ability to quickly connect with people. In this instance, it gives a personal insight into the lives of the victims that makes them much more than simply a name in a newcast.

Additional information: <a href="http://www.people.com">People</a>

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Original Source: <a href="http://www.profy.com/2007/04/17/virginia-tech-grieves-online/">http://www.profy.com/2007/04/17/virginia-tech-grieves-online/</a>

Licensed under <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/publicdomain/">Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication</a>.

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Cyndy Aleo-Carreira

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2007-05-29

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Brent Jesiek

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Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication

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eng

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Cyndy Aleo-Carreira, "Virginia Tech Grieves Online," in The April 16 Archive, Item #283, http://www.april16archive.org/items/show/283 (accessed September 19, 2014).