From Mindteaser Monday to Fault Friday, the Earthquake Twitter Team is off to a rollicking start. The team behind the account is dedicated to providing timely and accurate messages during working hours to help the public understand when, where, and how big earthquakes can be. Since earthquakes can happen at any time, account managers occasionally respond to significant off-hour earthquakes.
Example of Tweet by the USGS Earthquake Twitter Team posted on Mindteaser Monday, November 23, 2020. (Public domain.)
During large earthquakes, the account delivers the latest information and corrects earthquake rumors circling online to help people learn and understand more about earthquakes and associated risks. Much of this information comes from and points to the numerous USGS earthquake products that already provide valuable context for anyone wanting more details on effects of events that just occurred and future seismic potential.
“Earthquakes can be unsettling and this account is intended to move beyond the one-way flow of information and provide a listening ear to our audience, so we can provide real-time answers to common concerns,” said Keith Knudsen, Deputy Director of the USGS Earthquake Science Center. “It also provides interesting anecdotes and information about earthquakes in the quiet times between big events.”
The account started off with over 179,000 followers by rebranding the @USGS_BigQuakes Twitter account into @USGS_Quakes, and it has grown to almost 193,000 followers since the August 26 launch. The Big Quakes account was originally set up to automatically distribute Tweets for worldwide earthquakes of magnitude 6 or larger. The new @USGS_Quakes feed will also automatically distribute Tweets for significant earthquakes, but will also add moderated content. Users who wish to only receive automatic notifications of large earthquakes can subscribe to @USGSted or the Earthquake Notification Service.
USGS Quakes Twitter Account Logo (Public domain.)