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White House Cites Weather Channel Help With Emergency Info

Cable Net Will Promote Standardized Hashtags for Reporting Disaster Info 1/14/2014 2:30 PM Eastern


The Weather Channel got some ammunition for its argument that it is providing an important public service, a point it has been making in its carriage impasse with DirecTV.

As part of a Safety Data Initiative launched by the Obama Administration, The White House Tuesday convened what it billed a second annual Safety Datapalooza.

That included the rollout of standardized hash tags (#PowerLineDown #NoFuel and #GotFuel ) to report emergency information-- downed power lines where fuel is available-- across social media  during disasters.

One of the private sector partners the White House saluted for agreeing to get the message about the hashtags out.

"The Weather Channel will publicize to its 100 million+ web visitors and TV viewers [the] new standardized hash tags  developed by the White House," according to the Executive Office of the President.

According to the White House, The Weather Channel is also developing an app to help families prepare for natural disasters and extreme weather, targeted to "hyper-local" weatjer events and employing various data including "Weather Service alerts, precipitation proximity alerts, and lightning data."