Social Media do not entirely replace traditional means of communication and consultation but it is a more dynamic and cost-effective tool. During times of emergency, it accelerates the speed at which we can inform residents. It allows us to report decisions when they are made via streams such as Twitter and Facebook. Think Planning, Severe Weather, Gritting, School Closures, Cabinet Decisions – all of these can be reported in real time and via a medium that allows recipients to forward the information to their friends. Plugging in to Social Media wire the council to a vibrant, inter-connected medium. More significantly, when it is the council that is issuing the information, the nature of social media – forwarding, alerting, re-tweeting, imbedded links to Council web pages, means the message is far more likely to retain its integrity and accuracy than when issued through traditional channels such as the local media where the pursuit of headlines is the main driver. This approach will not eliminate entirely the appearance of misinformation or urban myths but it will improve our batting average and create a new, trusted outlet for Council information.





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