Overhype

by Timothy Geigner


Filed Under:
malaysia, text message, tragedy

Companies:
malaysian airlines



Dear Everyone: Stop Freaking Out That Malaysian Airlines Notified Victim's Families By Text Message

from the opt-in dept

Text messages are now used for many, many things. Such as laying off employees, mistakenly locking down schools, and going all George Orwell on local protests. As with most recent trends in technology, there are the detractors, decrying a loss of personal communication in favor of these heartless words that ding our smart phones. Never mind how useful most of this stuff is, or the wants and needs of those involved. For some, new technology is bad and society is about to fail.

There's a similar sentiment found in news reports of the families of the doomed Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 victims being notified that all aboard were killed via text message.

Before a Monday news conference announcing that Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 ended in the Indian Ocean, relatives of passengers learned the tragic news via a text from the airline. The text read: "Malaysia Airlines deeply regrets that we have to assume beyond a reasonable doubt that MH370 has been lost and that none of those on board survived. As you will hear in the next hour from Malaysia's Prime Minister, we must now accept all evidence suggests the plane went down in the Southern Indian Ocean."
That bit pulled from a CNN article is fairly tame, though it's a bit strange to see the fact that a text was sent out to some families (others were notified in person, with counselors on hand) leading the piece. Other reports, such as this one from Gawker, seem to treat the text notification as if it was the story. In that instance, the headline reads:
Malaysia Airlines Broke Crash News to Families Via Text
Focusing on this is stupid, not only because it's barely a story, but also because all this hand-wringing is entirely unwarranted. Malaysia Airlines themselves informed the public why they had gone with these text messages, while also clarifying that this wasn't a mass text that went out to all families with no other action taken. The texts were an opt-in decision by families that could not be met face to face at hotels or support centers. They wanted the families of the victims to get the news first before reporters got a hold of the story.

So while this story goes viral throughout the day, keep in mind that this is actually a good thing the airline did, not some heartless brush off of victims' families.


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  1. icon
    Factvsfiction (profile), 26 Mar 2014 @ 9:46am

    Sob story or distraction, look your stories of this being a distraction is just as much a theory as it being a real tragedy of 239 people being lost at sea and perhaps never found. Where is your compassion and why the heck are you bringing politics into a horrible story. These people aren't in any way distracting us from Snowden and why do you so think your government is out to get you.

    I've read so many of these people who think everything happens because its a cover up to what's going on today. Links to Snowden and a distraction are borderline schizophrenia. You need to get help. To think that the west would use this as a distraction while Russia invades the Ukraine is simply nuts.

    Russia in the past thirty years have been doing quite well without the Ukraine, to enter a sovereign nation is nothing less then total disregard to anyone or any country. Many parts of Russia are ravished with total poverty and while Putin and his circle abuse their powers and take away from the Russian people which is truly theirs. The Ukraine was the bread basket of Europe and was rich in farmland and fed much of Russia as well as Europe. The people of the Ukraine couldn't be happier. Now they are forced to choose sides and because Russia thinks it can just walk in and take away more from the Ukraine is similiar to what Hitler did. Just take and if you don't give we will shoot you.

    Can you not see the repeat in history? Although Russia doesn't have any allies period and are for the most part just playing bullies. Well we will see what the world will say and answer with. Putin won't be laughing long while his country financial systems go bankrupt and people who back him will turn their backs on him because the west will freeze all their assets.

    No one wanted this, the United States are on the brink of depression and it wouldn't be in their best interest to have the Ukraine as part of it's problem. The US has enough of their own and most of us see it. So if you vote then you can whine all you want and that's the time to voice your complaints. It's called democracy and thanks to those before me, Im thankful everyday. Im not a flag waving American and although you might think differently. Please leave the dead to their families. Let them grieve and stop this nonsense of conspiracy theories.

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