All-knowing Twitter for flood info | Bangkok Post: learning

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All-knowing Twitter for flood info

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Thai people joining Twitter in large numbers to get flood info from govt, experts & keep in contact with family & friends. 

traffic webcam

Traffic webcams (example) and canal water levels (example) to help people monitor the flood are available online at NECTEC's website.

Click button to listen to Twitter and the Floods to download

Twitter user numbers jump, Demand for flood info fuelling popularity by Suchit Leesa-nguansuk

The number of Twitter users in Thailand has climbed 20% to 600,000 these past two months, spurred by heightened demand for flood information and updates outside of traditional media.

Meanwhile, the global research firm Frost & Sullivan is urging the government to use more English on its social media channels to help pull in more international relief aid.

User accounts in September and October increased by 20% to 600,000 compared with the more usual single-digit growth, said Supachai Parchariyanon, the managing director of McFiva, the local digital media agency that holds the ad management rights to Twitter

He said tweeting volume doubled to 2 million tweets during the period, with #Thaiflood one of the hot tags

Jake Wengroff, Frost & Sullivan's global director for social media strategy and research, said social media has become the main channel for instant communications, especially during times of crisis.

The government has set up an official website at, while the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Ministry has set up @FloodThailand as an official Twitter account to inform the public.

However, Mr Wengroff said social networking has so far provided mainly Thai-language updates on the crisis, impeding international relief aid from non-Thai-speaking foreigners and limiting information to mostly Thais. 

Tiziana Bonapace, head of ICT at the UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific, said the Thai government needs to manage the spread of information via social networking sites to keep down panic.

She said it is important for the central authorities to set up a communications team in charge of social media similar to what the Japanese government did to allay online rumours after the tsunami.

The address will this week feed flood information from Twitter to allow users to obtain information about their locations, said Wasan Pattara-atikom, project leader for the Traffy information portal of the National Electronics and Computer Technology Center

He said visitors to the site have been eager to learn their local flood situation.

The system can filter the information in the event of multiple tweets about the same location.

Previously, the website provided only traffic information but now offers flood updates and live CCTV broadcasts from 30 canals in Greater Bangkok. Visitor numbers have surged from 30,000 a day to 100,000, with 15-20 million page views, Mr Wasan added.

(Source: Bangkok Post, Twitter user numbers jump, Demand for flood info fuelling popularity, 1/11/2011, Suchit Leesa-nguansuk, link

Social Media Vocabulary

social networking -  websites like Facebook and Twitter that allow people to communicate easily with each other, "an online service, platform, or site that focuses on building and reflecting of social networks or social relations among people, who, for example, share interests and/or activities. A social network service consists of a representation of each user (often a profile), his/her social links, and a variety of additional services. Most social network services are web-based and provide means for users to interact over the Internet, such as e-mail and instant messaging. Online community services are sometimes considered as a social network service, though in a broader sense, social network service usually means an individual-centered service whereas online community services are group-centered. Social networking sites allow users to share ideas, activities, events, and interests within their individual networks" (See Wikipedia)

social media -
the use of web-based and mobile technologies to turn communication into an interactive dialogue, "Internet-based applications that allow the creation and exchange of user-generated content," has changed the way of communication between organizations, communities, as well as individuals (See Wikipedia)

National Electronics and Computer Technology Center (NECTEC) - a Thai government agency started in 1986 to promote the development of electronic, computing, telecommunication, and information technologies through research and development activities (See Wikipedia and website

Twitter - an online social networking system, users send and read short messages of up to 140 characters known as "tweets", when a Twitter user follows another Twitter user they will receive all of their Tweets to read; a good way to get current information during disasters or big events that happen quickly; also a good way to find information on the internet (See Wikipedia)

Twitter users -
people who sign up and have a Twitter account and then receive Tweets from people they follow and send Tweets to the people who follow them
user accounts - Twitter account, when a person signs up and becomes a member of Twitter they receive a Twitter account from which they can send and receive messages
volume - the quantity or amount of something
tweeting volume - the amount of Tweets that are being sent during a period of time
tags -
Twitter hashtags, users can group posts together by topic or type by use of hashtags – words or phrases prefixed with a "#" sign
hot tags - popular Twitter hashtags, tags that many people like
official Twitter account - a Twitter set up by a company or organization to communicate official information

media - public ways of communicating news and information: television, radio, newspapers, magazines, the internet, considered as a group สื่อ

traditional - things (clothes, music, customs, etc.) that have been part of a country or society for a long time
traditional media - media that does not use the internet, paper-based newspapers, magazines and television, radio that have all existed for a long time  

digital media - the new internet-based media; or more abstractly: ""the creative convergence of digital arts, science, technology and business for human expression, communication, social interaction and education" (See Wikipedia)

media agency -
"a company which help companies to communicate with current and potential consumers and/or the general public... using channels ranging from public relations (PR), events and sponsorship to advertising, interactive advertising, word of mouth and direct mail; ... create and execute activity for advertising, digital media and sponsorship... The main difference between a media agency and their advertising agency counterparts is that return on investment (ROI) is key – ensuring that every element of the clients’ media investment is evaluated and accountable. They also differ from social media marketing agencies which specialize in promotion of brands in the social media space" (See Wikipedia)

digital media agency - a media agency that specializes in internet communications

strategy - a plan to achieve a goal over a longer period of time  ('strategy' gives the big picture, 'tactics' the details)
social media strategy - (See Wikipedia)

communication - the process of sending meaningful information between people (between two people, from one person or organization to many people, etc) (See Wikipedia)
communications channel - a way of communicating with people or getting something done ช่องทาง

social media channels -
ways to get information (or communicate information) through social media

instant -
immediate, happening right now without delay 
instant communications - getting information to people, telling people something, right now, without delay
channel for instant communications - a way to provide information to people without delay

update - a short news story providing the latest information about a situation or event

spurred - caused ก่อให้เกิด
demand - the need and desire things by households and businesses to get things and buy things
spurred by heightened demand for flood information and updates

X fuelling Y - X causing Y to happen
popularity - how many people like something
demand for flood info fuelling popularity - becoming more popular, because people looking for flood info

crisis - an urgent, difficult or dangerous situation วิกฤตการณ์ วิกฤต
during times of crisis
provided mainly Thai-language updates on the crisis

research -
studying something very closely and carefully to discover and find out new facts about it (See Wikipedia)
global - throughout the world ทั่วโลก ทั้งโลก all over the world, including the whole world
firm - a business or company บริษัม
global research firm Frost & Sullivan

Frost & Sullivan - a management consulting firm with many offices located around the world (See website and Business Week)

relief - help, assistance given to people in need; assistance; money, food, medicine etc. that is given to help people in places where there has been a natural disaster, war, etc. เครื่องบรรเทาสาธารณภัย การช่วยให้พ้นภัย, ผ่อนคลาย, บรรเทา

- between countries ระหว่างประเทศ
international relief aid

pull in -
get, receive (after making effort to get it, working hard to get it)
pull in more international relief aid

digit - any one of the ten numbers 0 to 9 ตัวเลข (0 ถึง 9)
single-digit growth - an increase over period ranging from 0% to 9.99% (10% is already 2-digit growth)

ad management rights -
rights - what the law allows you to have and do สิทธิ์ (See Wikipedia)
holds the ad management rights to Twitter (in Thailand)

official - approved by the government or some authority ที่เป็นทางการ
official website - the one website approved by the government (or some other "official" organization)

The government has set up an
official website

inform - tell people about what happened, report new information to people who don't know about it yet
inform the public - tell everyone what happened

impede -
making it difficult for something to happen (example: his wet clothes impeded his movement)
impeding international relief aid
- make it difficult for organizations outside of Thailand to provide help 

spread - to cause to cover, reach or have an effect on a wider or increasing area or number of people กระจายไปทั่ว แพร่กระจาย แพร่กระจายไปทั่ว แพร่หลาย
spread of information - when information gradually reaches more and more people
manage the spread of information - actions to make information reach certain groups of people more quickly or more slowly

panic - a sudden strong feeling of fear and confusion; which makes you act without thinking carefully ความหวาดวิตก  (See glossary)
keep down panic - reduce panic, make people less frightened and afraid

the Thai government needs to
manage the spread of information via social networking sites to keep down panic.

authorities - government officials; the police or people in official organisations who have the legal power to make people obey laws or rules เจ้าหน้าที่ (ตำรวจ หรือผู้มีอำนาจ)
central authorities - the central government of the whole country

set up a communications team in charge
of social media

rumours - news, stories, information passed around from person to person so that a lot of people are talking about it (that may or may not be true, not proven yet)
allay - to make something less serious or troublesome บรรเทา to make some feel less of something, like worry, fear or doubt ขจัดความสงสัย ขจัดความกังวล
online - connected to the internet
allay rumour - stop an inaccurate rumour and make it less troublesome (giving the real information) 
allay online rumours

web portal - a web site that is an entry point into the web and internet, "a portal presents information from diverse sources in a unified way. Apart from the standard search engine feature, web portals offer other services such as e-mail, news, stock prices, information, databases and entertainment. Portals provide a way for enterprises to provide a consistent look and feel with access control and procedures for multiple applications and databases, which otherwise would have been different entities altogether. Examples of public web portals are AOL, Excite, iGoogle, MSN, Netvibes, and Yahoo!" (See Wikipedia)
information portal - a web portal to provide people with the information they need (in a timely fashion)

visitors to the
site - people visiting a website during a day or month
site - website
visitor numbers - the number of people visiting a website or webpage (visitors) 
surged - increased quickly เพิ่มขึ้นอย่างรวดเร็ว
visitor numbers have surged from 30,000 a day to 100,000

eager - want to do very much; wanting to do or get something very much or enthusiastic about something that will happen กระตือรือร้น
eager to learn their local flood situation

filter -
a device that only allows certain things to pass through it (example: the water filter removed large dirt particles from the water)
filter the information -
remove innaccurate information, leaving accurate information

traffic - the number traveling to a place during a period of time (people, aircraft, ships, trains, cars, trucks, etc.) ความหนาแน่นของจำนวนคน หรือยานพาหนะในช่วงเวลาใดช่วงเวลาหนึ่ง
traffic information - information about how many cars are on the road and about traffic jams
traffic jams -
when there are cars on the road, so cars are stopped and waiting or moving very slowly (so it takes a long time to travel to places)

canal - a water road, a long stretch of water for boats to travel on or to send water to a place where it is needed for growing crops, for example (See Wikipedia)

close-circuit TV, video cameras that show what is happening at many places place (See Wikipedia)
broadcasts -
when a video is made available to many people (through TV or the internet, for example)
live broadcasts -  a broadcast that happens when the event happens (so people can see the event as it happens, without delay)
Greater Bangkok -
not just the city of Bangkok (the whole area surrounding Bangkok and connected to Bangkok by roads and economy) 

live CCTV broadcasts
from 30 canals in Greater Bangkok

address - to deal with a problem จัดการปัญหา

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