This past week we have seen a great deal of local and national media coverage on the missing IU student Lauren Spierer. In the wake of this gut wrenching story I began to see social media posts of the search efforts everywhere. I saw a twitter post from Ryan Seacrest retweeting about the missing girl. I also saw updates and interviews from her parents on The Today Show. I was even invited to help the search efforts through Facebook. This got me wondering how social media can help search efforts for missing people.
A new poster has been released in the search for Lauren Spierer. Beside her photograph is a QR code. A QR code is used by smart phones and it directs you to a website. In this case, it's the official Find Lauren website run by her family.
You can find the social media sites specifically made to find Lauren here:
I recently read a blog that said, "If you focus on broadcasting messages (like Amber Alerts) that are more targeted to your followers by location, you are more likely to actually put those Tweets in front of a person who is in the area where that person went missing and therefore could be able to help." Using SocialBro, you can run a quick analysis of your Twitter followers to see where they are located.
Social media sites are primarily used to communicate with friends and family in a fun and entertaining way. You can twitpic a picture of yourself eating the best burger in town. You can “like” your favorite band on Facebook. Why not use the influence you have with your followers and help find missing people?