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This Twitter image shows Haitians standing amid the rubble in Port-au-Prince. Photograph: AFP/Getty Images With many of the official lines of communication down, user-generated content played an important role yesterday in spreading news about the Haiti earthquake.
7.50am: The earthquake has cut much of the communication to Haiti including airports, but harrowing eyewitness accounts have emerged. "Everything started shaking, people were screaming, houses started collapsing, it 's total chaos ," said Joseph Guyler Delva, a Reuters reporter. This footage which appears to show a dust cloud from a destroyed urban area appeared on YouTube. Many of the initial accounts of the devastation were posted to Twitter, according to the New York Times Lede blog. The LA Times has a compiled a list of Twitter user who say they are in Port-au-Prince. The New York Times has another useful Twitter list .
Former US President Bill Clinton has made a renewed appeal for aid at a special session on Haiti at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Mr Clinton started by praising the people of Haiti who he said had behaved "magnificently" in the aftermath of the devastating earthquake. He then called for more aid and pick-up trucks to help with distribution saying: "If anyone knows where I can get some trucks, I need 100 yesterday". <p style="text-align:right;color:#A8A8A8"></p>
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An outpouring of well wishes and support for the Haitian people has swept the web in the wake of a devastating 7.0 earthquake in Haiti . And just like during the Eureka earthquake , tweets have quickly spread moving and gut-wrenching TwitPics of the disaster. Photos taken by journalist @CarelPedre on his mobile phone are providing a glimpse into the devastation that has slammed the Caribbean nation. Another Twitter user, @MarvinAdy , shared those pictures through TwitPic, resulting in tens of thousands of views and countless retweets. There are also thousands of Facebook and Twitter updates on the disaster appearing every minute.
You can now get a satellite's-eye view of the devastation in Haiti with Google Earth . Google worked with satellite imaging company GeoEye to put together a map layer file that provides up-close views of the wreckage of government buildings and more in the Haitian capital city of Port-au-Prince. Download the file to check it out. It's in KML format, and it should load in Google Earth automatically if you have that desktop app installed.
Photo: REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz Numerous members of the TED community have sought to find a way to help victims of the Haiti quake. We believe one of the organizations best placed to make an immediate difference is Partners in Health . They have operated medical facilities in Haiti for more than two decades and have numerous people on the ground.
The TED Blog today spoke with Patrick Meier, who is part of the team at Ushahidi working to bring information about the Haiti earthquake crisis to Haitians (those inside and outside the country), the press, humanitarian relief workers, governments, and concerned people worldwide. (TED Senior Fellow Erik Hersman , TED speaker Ory Okolloh and TED Senior Fellow Juliana Rotich co-founded the organization.) Visit Ushahidi’s Haiti site at http://Haiti.Ushahidi.com/ >>
A new wave of panic hit the streets of Haiti this morning as a strong aftershock unleashed even more destruction on the ravaged country. This secondary quake was estimated at 6.1 magnitude , but reports on further damage aren’t yet available. According to the U.S. Geological Survey, today’s earthquake was centered 26 miles west-northwest of Jacmel. As military personnel are trying to keep order in the streets of Port-au-Prince, the secondary quake raises further concerns of riots and violence breaking out in the Haitian capital. With Twitter currently being flaky, many users have turned to Facebook to point out the news and express their support .