Sunday, May 8, 2011

First Credible Reports Of Bin Laden's Death Spread Like Wildfire On Twitter

The news actually hit Twitter before the President’s broadcast; CNN’s Steve Brusk first tweeted that the briefing was National Security-related at around 7:25pm PST. The first credible sign of the imminent announcement of Bin Ladin’s death came from Keith Urbahn, the Chief of Staff for former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, who tweeted “I’m told by a reputable person they have killed Osama Bin Laden.” CBS news producer Jill Scott then confirmed the rumor shortly afterward with “House Intelligence committee aide confirms that Osama Bin Laden is dead. U.S. has the body.” Both Urbahn and Scott’s tweets were re-tweeted hundreds of times and Twitter itself experienced traffic spikes of 4,000 tweets per second. Unsurprisingly, “Osama Bin Laden” is now a Twitter trending topic. What’s amazing was that the news is already out before the President has even spoken.


  1. It's not only interesting that the news it out before the president speaks but the news is out before a newspaper or television broadcasting network presents it. Even though we've been learning all year about this new media, it still amazes me something so huge as osama bin laden being killed was spread through a social media outlet before a credible news station or website.

  2. Wow this is crazy! But I guess that's the way of the world now. Social media is taking the world by storm. Twitter today....what's next up for tomorrow?

  3. So crazy! Although the way the news of his death was released was pretty strange to begin with, the whole late-night announcement thing, not to mention Obama's dramatic speech.