32 votes

Presidential Alert Test, thoughts?

Tags: usa, ask

63 comments

  1. [14]
    Rocket_Man
    Link
    Seems fine to me. There are cases where you might want to alert an entire nation about something. But it obviously has to be used in only legitimate circumstances.
    • Exemplary

    Seems fine to me. There are cases where you might want to alert an entire nation about something. But it obviously has to be used in only legitimate circumstances.

    38 votes
    1. [14]
      Comment deleted by author
      Link Parent
      1. [12]
        Comment deleted by author
        Link Parent
        1. [11]
          CALICO
          Link Parent
          Specific to those kinds of events, how much value is there in an alert? If the bombs drop we can kiss our civilization goodbye, and I'll personally be vaporized. You're really gonna give me...

          Specific to those kinds of events, how much value is there in an alert? If the bombs drop we can kiss our civilization goodbye, and I'll personally be vaporized. You're really gonna give me unblockable anxiety about it beforehand? With a Carrington Event v2.0 I suppose it would let folks know that it wasn't a hostile attack or anything, but it doesn't really help people survive the aftermath.
          In either case we'd have hours notice at most, and the instantaneous gridlock in cities wouldn't be beneficial.

          8 votes
          1. [3]
            spit-evil-olive-tips
            Link Parent
            The Cold War era "duck and cover for a nuclear blast" gets joked about a lot but there is a reason for it. There's a significant area at the edges of the blast radius where most damage is caused...
            • Exemplary

            The Cold War era "duck and cover for a nuclear blast" gets joked about a lot but there is a reason for it. There's a significant area at the edges of the blast radius where most damage is caused by an overpressure wave that shatters glass and causes other structural damage. 30 seconds of warning to get away from windows would actually save lives in that case.

            34 votes
            1. EscReality
              Link Parent
              Agreed, not to mention in much of rural America it would help everyone find their loved ones and get coordinated before things went down. Middle and rural America obviously would not be the direct...

              Agreed, not to mention in much of rural America it would help everyone find their loved ones and get coordinated before things went down. Middle and rural America obviously would not be the direct target of a nuclear strike or invasion, but we would obviously be heavily affected by it. It would give us an extra few mins to gather loved ones, gather food and let's be honest gather guns before the grid goes down.

              As long as it doesn't become the orange one's private twitter account I am all for this system if used properly.

              11 votes
            2. yellow
              Link Parent
              Thank you, the fact that there is a certainly fatal zone and an unaffected zone should imply that there is a dangerous, possibly fatal zone. While hydrogen bombs and ICBMs in the number that they...

              Thank you, the fact that there is a certainly fatal zone and an unaffected zone should imply that there is a dangerous, possibly fatal zone. While hydrogen bombs and ICBMs in the number that they have been manufactured probably allow for a 100% coverage of the Earth, It's not like we know for sure how a nuclear war would play out. Maybe defense system take out a few launches, or some officers don't launch due to orders or just not wanting to kill people. Maybe there one or only a few warheads aimed at some sparsely populated areas. It's quite possible that someone will live if they are inside one building and die in another.

              5 votes
          2. hungariantoast
            Link Parent
            Knowing that a solar storm is about to grind your city to a halt, instead of being left wondering if an EMP or some other event just knocked America cold, is incredibly valuable information to...

            Knowing that a solar storm is about to grind your city to a halt, instead of being left wondering if an EMP or some other event just knocked America cold, is incredibly valuable information to have preceding a disaster.

            Could you imagine how awful it would be if Houston (where I live) went dark without any sort of warning ahead of time? People would react much worse due to uncertainty I think.

            Having systems like this in place where we can warn everyone within an hour is incredibly powerful and useful. I do not think you should be able to opt out of it but I do think it is a very delicate privilege for the government to have and they need to refrain from abusing it.

            In other words, emergencies and necessary tests only.

            Also, I got these kinds of alerts at least five times a day just before and during hurricane Harvey so I know just how annoying they can get, but ultimately they were useful during that situation.

            13 votes
          3. [6]
            Comment deleted by author
            Link Parent
            1. [5]
              CALICO
              Link Parent
              If Duck and Cover is actually a valid strategy that saves lives in a nuclear event, maybe it's worth it. But that doesn't really get taught anymore. That nuclear false-alarm in Hawaii early this...

              If Duck and Cover is actually a valid strategy that saves lives in a nuclear event, maybe it's worth it.
              But that doesn't really get taught anymore. That nuclear false-alarm in Hawaii early this year was a mess. Nobody really knew what to do. People were hysterical, and reckless. We're not prepared as a nation to deal with a nuclear event, not intelligently. If we're concerned enough about a nuclear strike on American soil to justify this system, there ought to be national awareness campaigns on how to react to these alerts as well.

              3 votes
              1. [5]
                Comment deleted by author
                Link Parent
                1. [4]
                  CALICO
                  Link Parent
                  Fair enough, I suppose. I stand by this though: If the threat is real enough, there needs to be education about it before a text get sent warning us of an inbound ICBM. Hawaii was more prepared...

                  Fair enough, I suppose.
                  I stand by this though: If the threat is real enough, there needs to be education about it before a text get sent warning us of an inbound ICBM. Hawaii was more prepared than some other areas, due to their proximity to North Korea and their dealing with natural disasters in the past. Even they suffered 38 minutes of pandemonium before the All Clear, though some people did go to their nearest storm shelters.
                  Not everyone is so prepared.
                  If I received an alert on my phone, BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO DC. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL, I wouldn't know what the fuck to do. I know I've seen Fallout Shelter signs while walking around the area, but I couldn't tell you where my nearest one is or how many of those are maintained or still around. If I had time to get in my car I wouldn't know where to go. There would definitely be more than one nuke on it's way, there's so much critical infrastructure here. Lord knows I wouldn't be able to leave the immediate area in time to avoid the guaranteed 3rd degree burns, at best, during even normal traffic—let alone nuclear-panic traffic. I suppose I'd try to drive my car into the Potomac, the river would probably offer more protection than my shitty-ass apartment building.
                  I suppose I can see the utility in such an alert, but it's not going to maximize its effectiveness without awareness campaigns.

                  3 votes
                  1. [3]
                    lmn
                    Link Parent
                    Shouldn't discussing these events, seeing what happened in Hawaii, and getting test alerts inspire you to learn what you should do in a disaster? There's plenty of information online. As an...

                    Shouldn't discussing these events, seeing what happened in Hawaii, and getting test alerts inspire you to learn what you should do in a disaster? There's plenty of information online. As an example, the government published resources about nuclear war during the cold war.

                    The basics are having a plan to coordinate with your family, having a safe place, and having supplies. If something goes down you basically want to know what to do, take shelter, and figure out a long term solution.

                    1 vote
                    1. [2]
                      CALICO
                      Link Parent
                      For some people, sure. For me personally, I'm not concerned about it. In the event of nuclear war, I'll probably never know about it. I'm within the instant kill radius of many critical...

                      For some people, sure.

                      For me personally, I'm not concerned about it. In the event of nuclear war, I'll probably never know about it. I'm within the instant kill radius of many critical governmental areas for most common warhead yields. I'd be hot vapor, most likely.

                      1 vote
                      1. papasquat
                        Link Parent
                        There are a number of anti ballistic missile defenses that the US has that could stop a significant percentage of incoming nuclear missiles in their midcourse phase. Even if you're in a probable...

                        There are a number of anti ballistic missile defenses that the US has that could stop a significant percentage of incoming nuclear missiles in their midcourse phase. Even if you're in a probable target area, there's a decent chance those warheads could be intercepted before they hit. Still worth learning what to do.

                        1 vote
          4. Rocket_Man
            Link Parent
            I think it's also useful to point out that a warning could also point to a resource such as https://www.ready.gov/nuclear-explosion. Which would help quickly disseminate information people might...

            I think it's also useful to point out that a warning could also point to a resource such as https://www.ready.gov/nuclear-explosion. Which would help quickly disseminate information people might not know. Like to not condition your hair if you've been in contact with radioactive material.

            1 vote
      2. spit-evil-olive-tips
        Link Parent
        Even if a real world alert is likely to be localized, there's value in doing one nationwide test rather than 50 individual tests to simplify the messaging that it's only a drill. I certainly agree...

        Even if a real world alert is likely to be localized, there's value in doing one nationwide test rather than 50 individual tests to simplify the messaging that it's only a drill.

        I certainly agree though that they should be blockable and have customizable notification settings. And they should have some form of 2-person rule to send them, to prevent Trump (or any future president) from using it as a mega-Tweet.

        2 votes
      3. stephen
        Link Parent
        Maybe the subtext here is that they have in mind some sort of mind-boggling catastrophe scenarios in mind and they want to get out ahead of it. Or maybe this like the terrorism scale and they are...

        I'm struggling to imagine what that could be

        Maybe the subtext here is that they have in mind some sort of mind-boggling catastrophe scenarios in mind and they want to get out ahead of it. Or maybe this like the terrorism scale and they are just trying to drum up fear in support of another war. Maybe with Syria and Iran? They've wanted to invade those two forever

        1 vote
  2. [18]
    Gaywallet
    Link
    I fucking hate these alerts. Cool some child got abducted and here's a license plate. What do you expect me to do? Read every license plate I see? Even if you do, how does making the alert blare...

    I fucking hate these alerts.

    Cool some child got abducted and here's a license plate. What do you expect me to do? Read every license plate I see? Even if you do, how does making the alert blare really loudly in the middle of the day encourage me to do so? Why can't the alert be silent?

    I'm just waiting for Donald Trump to send a presidential alert that's essentially a tweet about something stupid.

    I need to find a custom ROM that disables this shit

    27 votes
    1. [6]
      novac
      Link Parent
      Nobody expects you to do anything. They're sent out on the off chance that someone happens to be near said license plate when they receive the alert, not for people to go full Batman and deliver...

      Cool some child got abducted and here's a license plate. What do you expect me to do? Read every license plate I see?

      Nobody expects you to do anything. They're sent out on the off chance that someone happens to be near said license plate when they receive the alert, not for people to go full Batman and deliver justice. AMBER alerts work. Also, they can be disabled on most phones.

      39 votes
      1. [4]
        RapidEyeMovement
        Link Parent
        I would love to know the numbers on that and how they are gathered.

        AMBER alerts work.

        I would love to know the numbers on that and how they are gathered.

        5 votes
        1. [3]
          tomf
          Link Parent
          Here's some data from 2016 -- https://www.amberalert.gov/pdfs/2016AMBERAlertReport.pdf (page 23) - activation to recovery time Intaked cases 179 Cases classified as hoax or unfounded after intake...
          • Exemplary

          Here's some data from 2016 -- https://www.amberalert.gov/pdfs/2016AMBERAlertReport.pdf

          (page 23)

          - activation to recovery time
          Intaked cases 179
          Cases classified as hoax or unfounded after intake 21
          Intaked children 231
          Children whose cases were classified as hoax or unfounded after intake 32
          Number of cases in which child reported as being recovered within 72 hours 150
          Percent of cases in which child reported as being recovered within 72 hours 95%*
          Number of children reported as being recovered within 72 hours 188
          Percent of children reported as being recovered within 72 hours 94%**

          * Percentage excludes cases classified as hoaxes (n=8) and unfounded (n=13)
          ** Percentage excludes children classified as hoaxes (n=9) and unfounded (n=23)

          29 votes
          1. [2]
            yellow
            (edited )
            Link Parent
            This study(Preliminary Examination of AMBER Alert’s Effects) from 2007 claims that the system helped in about 30% of cases. It also says that most of the cases it helped with were not dangerous,...

            This study(Preliminary Examination of AMBER Alert’s Effects) from 2007 claims that the system helped in about 30% of cases. It also says that most of the cases it helped with were not dangerous, but I'd imagine that no ones knows that when they send out the alert. It also acknowledges that it is difficult to compare results, as not all amber alerts are account for, some data is withheld for privacy, and it's not able to compare to not having AMBER alerts.

            13 votes
            1. tomf
              Link Parent
              yeah, with the stats showing that its mostly mothers and fathers kidnapping their kids, I would assume that they are counting these as being 'not dangerous', where another good chunk are false...

              yeah, with the stats showing that its mostly mothers and fathers kidnapping their kids, I would assume that they are counting these as being 'not dangerous', where another good chunk are false alarms or pranks.

              I think the Amber alerts fall under 'if it helps, it helps... if not, we're no worse off'

              It would be interesting to test a system like this. Park a bright yellow van on the side of the highway and then post the Amber alerts on the signage -- count the calls over the course of an hour or two. Compare that against law enforcement being given set, limited information (e.g. location of abduction, description of automobile and driver), then using their resources to find the same van on another day without the Amber alert.

              It'd be an expensive exercise to come to the same conclusion that even if the Amber alerts bring one kid home safe, its worth it.

              4 votes
      2. Gaywallet
        Link Parent
        I have them disabled and I still get them. Last time I had to disable it via cfw

        Also, they can be disabled on most phones.

        I have them disabled and I still get them. Last time I had to disable it via cfw

        1. Removed by admin: 6 comments by 2 users
          Link Parent
    2. [7]
      Emerald_Knight
      Link Parent
      This is exactly the concern that I have, and if the last two years have been any indication, he wouldn't suffer any consequences for it.

      I'm just waiting for Donald Trump to send a presidential alert that's essentially a tweet about something stupid.

      This is exactly the concern that I have, and if the last two years have been any indication, he wouldn't suffer any consequences for it.

      29 votes
      1. [6]
        Comment deleted by author
        Link Parent
        1. [4]
          Emerald_Knight
          Link Parent
          Every time I think "that can't be true, this story has to be made up" with regards to the antics of this administration, they continue to prove me wrong. It's just easier to assume that something...

          Every time I think "that can't be true, this story has to be made up" with regards to the antics of this administration, they continue to prove me wrong. It's just easier to assume that something like this is a realistic possibility.

          18 votes
          1. [3]
            liberty
            Link Parent
            I feel the same, but I also have similar feelings with regards to things people get outraged at. I find myself constantly amazed at the things that will get people vitriolic, while other things...

            I feel the same, but I also have similar feelings with regards to things people get outraged at. I find myself constantly amazed at the things that will get people vitriolic, while other things that are important to me are seemingly non-issues for the public.

            8 votes
            1. [2]
              dubteedub
              Link Parent
              I'm kind of amazed that the NYT story yesterday that completely blew up the lie that Trump is a self made billionaire and his father used dubious tax schemes along with outright fraud to illegally...

              I'm kind of amazed that the NYT story yesterday that completely blew up the lie that Trump is a self made billionaire and his father used dubious tax schemes along with outright fraud to illegally funnel money to his son barely held onto the news cycle for more than a couple hours.

              7 votes
              1. [2]
                Comment deleted by author
                Link Parent
                1. nacho
                  Link Parent
                  I think it's precisely because of Kavanaugh they're publishing now. Kavanaugh could give any president complete immunity from, say, tax fraud. He seems picked as the candidate for the Supreme...

                  "Why did they choose to publish this today?"

                  I think it's precisely because of Kavanaugh they're publishing now. Kavanaugh could give any president complete immunity from, say, tax fraud. He seems picked as the candidate for the Supreme Court precisely because of his views on investigations regarding the president.

                  After he's seated at the court, it's too late.

                  I'd expect NYT wishes they'd gotten this at a different time, but feel obligated to publish now in case that's what'll flip a senator's vote. Even though they'd get way more out of it for the NYT by publishing at basically any other time.

                  4 votes
        2. BlackLedger
          Link Parent
          I think it's justified. The seniormost people who, in a normal administration, would be the ones you'd expect to exercise some restraint demonstrably cannot stand up to him and have to resort to...

          I think it's justified. The seniormost people who, in a normal administration, would be the ones you'd expect to exercise some restraint demonstrably cannot stand up to him and have to resort to sitcomesque tactics like stealing papers off of his desk. I don't expect the mid-level public servants under them at FEMA or the FCC to put their careers on the line to prevent one act of buffoonery in an ongoing circus. So yes, I do not think it's out of the question that you'd get something like "PRESIDENTIAL ALERT: Many people, the best people really, are saying the president has very, very good penis. Believe me."

          2 votes
      2. TinyBabyOwl
        Link Parent
        The President doesn't have any direct control over the content of the messages. This is entirely a FEMA thing. You have nothing to worry about.

        The President doesn't have any direct control over the content of the messages. This is entirely a FEMA thing. You have nothing to worry about.

        4 votes
    3. [2]
      alyaza
      Link Parent
      at least to me, it seems like the sound aspect is for people away from phones/TVs who might be alerted to the warning. that said it really seems to only make sense in the context of a weather...

      at least to me, it seems like the sound aspect is for people away from phones/TVs who might be alerted to the warning. that said it really seems to only make sense in the context of a weather alert or something similar. it seems useless with tests like these.

      8 votes
      1. ali
        Link Parent
        I think a one time test is not a bad thing, at least with it being so big in the news right now, everyone will know if their phone works

        I think a one time test is not a bad thing, at least with it being so big in the news right now, everyone will know if their phone works

        2 votes
    4. frickindeal
      Link Parent
      FEMA controls the messages, in coordination with agencies and the White House. No real risk of Trump tweeting out Presidential Messages, although something tells me he was either behind naming...

      FEMA controls the messages, in coordination with agencies and the White House.

      FEMA officials confer with other government agencies and the White House, select one of several pre-written messages, customize the message to fit the particular emergency and send it out.

      No real risk of Trump tweeting out Presidential Messages, although something tells me he was either behind naming them that, or he's quite happy about it.

      8 votes
    5. elfox
      Link Parent
      You should be able to disable the sound on it. I can disable the sound on mine. When I got the alerts they didn't make any noise at all.

      You should be able to disable the sound on it. I can disable the sound on mine. When I got the alerts they didn't make any noise at all.

      2 votes
  3. [5]
    cptcobalt
    Link
    I work in an open office with a large number of people all on one floor. The alert sounded like one continuous siren—no way you could miss it. It also spawned a huge productivity loss, as people...

    I work in an open office with a large number of people all on one floor. The alert sounded like one continuous siren—no way you could miss it.

    It also spawned a huge productivity loss, as people have now gotten up and started chatting (because how could you ignore that), so...presidentially invoked time-theft?

    16 votes
    1. [4]
      Parliament
      Link Parent
      Tbf, this entire presidency has led to a huge productivity loss. I'm convinced that my work product would be higher quality and completed more efficiently if we had a sane president.

      Tbf, this entire presidency has led to a huge productivity loss. I'm convinced that my work product would be higher quality and completed more efficiently if we had a sane president.

      16 votes
      1. [2]
        liberty
        Link Parent
        I can't imagine how my productivity or efficiency at work would be affected by politics. Do you work for the federal government where the executive branch has an impact on your job, or do you just...

        I can't imagine how my productivity or efficiency at work would be affected by politics. Do you work for the federal government where the executive branch has an impact on your job, or do you just find the media hubbub distracting?

        2 votes
        1. Parliament
          Link Parent
          I’m just really concerned with the present state of things and aim to stay informed. If nothing else, we’re watching history unfold live. I don’t want to miss seeing it firsthand. I’ve also been...

          I’m just really concerned with the present state of things and aim to stay informed. If nothing else, we’re watching history unfold live. I don’t want to miss seeing it firsthand. I’ve also been volunteering in electoral campaigns for the first time in my life, so it’s a bit of a vicious cycle. Researching news inspires me to contribute and contributing inspires me to research more.

          3 votes
      2. emacsomancer
        Link Parent
        Tbf, the presidency of the US has caused huge productivity loss for a long time.

        Tbf, the presidency of the US has caused huge productivity loss for a long time.

        1 vote
  4. [2]
    Emerald_Knight
    Link
    What truly bothers me is that with the FCC being managed the way it is and with Trump being as crazy as he is, this system could potentially be abused. I could see a system like this being used...

    What truly bothers me is that with the FCC being managed the way it is and with Trump being as crazy as he is, this system could potentially be abused. I could see a system like this being used for the purposes of propaganda, to instill fear to keep voters controlled. Given the general lack of punishment for bad behavior in the executive and legislative branches lately, I wouldn't see the "abuse will lead to punishment" argument holding much water, either.

    A system like this has a lot of potential, but this is some seriously bad timing for rolling it out. My money is on seeing this system being abused by the end of the month.

    15 votes
    1. jackson
      Link Parent
      This system needs strict controls on what's ok and not ok to use it for. It should be controlled in such a way that in an emergency, a message can quickly be sent out, but it must go through the...

      This system needs strict controls on what's ok and not ok to use it for. It should be controlled in such a way that in an emergency, a message can quickly be sent out, but it must go through the mess of bureaucracy for any other use.

      2 votes
  5. [3]
    RapidEyeMovement
    Link
    I really find all these notifications creepy and obtrusive. I just wish I could put into words why they make my skin crawl.

    I really find all these notifications creepy and obtrusive. I just wish I could put into words why they make my skin crawl.

    7 votes
    1. papasquat
      Link Parent
      I think they're a pretty valuable tool if used correctly. A nationwide alert system could save lives one day, and if literally five seconds per year of annoyance is the price to pay for that, then...

      I think they're a pretty valuable tool if used correctly. A nationwide alert system could save lives one day, and if literally five seconds per year of annoyance is the price to pay for that, then by all means, go right ahead.

      10 votes
    2. Rainier
      Link Parent
      Could you try to explain? It really doesn’t seem like that big a deal to me.

      Could you try to explain? It really doesn’t seem like that big a deal to me.

      6 votes
  6. [2]
    yellow
    (edited )
    Link
    I don't really mind it right now. This might have a lot to do with the fact that it went out while I was outside and always keep my phone on vibrate. I just noticed a slight increase in people...

    I don't really mind it right now. This might have a lot to do with the fact that it went out while I was outside and always keep my phone on vibrate. I just noticed a slight increase in people looking at their phones and a few people talking about it (along with briefly thinking I was getting a call). I'll probably be hearing about all the classes and libraries disturbed any moment now, which would have probably irked me as well if it happened 15 minutes earlier. I don't mind a test of this system too much, and I see the value of a federal alert system.

    However, I do see how this can be abused, and I would no be surprised if it is. I also would not be surprised if it isn't. If it becomes an issue, maybe I will finally switch to Lineage or some other OS (where someone will have made a disable feature or at least be open source enough to let me do so). I don't think it will come to that, but I know what I will do if it does. I do think that devices should allow it to be disabled, but that's more because I think devices should allow their owner to use them as they wish, not as their manufacturer decides.

    I think some people are overreacting to this a bit. Emergency Alerts are meant to interrupt and be disruptive. I acknowledge there is good chance this gets misused, but there hasn't been any sign of that yet. Some people are reacting to the very idea of disabling it as close minded. Plenty of people are not in the US, do not want alerts on certain devices, or want to preempt abuse. I don't see an issue with that either, but acting like a federal alert system is completely wrong also seems misguided.

    The one thing that sticks out to me though is, the fact that it is called a "presidential" alert. Why not just "federal" or "executive"? If its part of the executive branch, then the president would have pretty solid control of it anyways (yes, some departments are more separate, but even they are run by presidential appointees). Is it just some Trump branding that marks it as his own and not a part of the federal government to sit better with his base? I'm sure that the name alone is part of the wide spread disdain for it, but not without reason, as it does seem to hint at being used for personal/political reasons.

    I didn't think I had this much to rant, but you asked for thoughts, so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    P.S.

    I forgot while typing this the first time that I have been a little concerned about one scenario. If it becomes abused to the point that a lot people bother to disable it somehow, then things might get awkward when an alert is sent out and you can tell who looks at their phone and who doesn't. (Honestly, I'm a little afraid to even put this idea out there, because its the sort of thing that is more likely to happen the more that people are aware of it)

    7 votes
    1. RapidEyeMovement
      Link Parent
      because I was curious who can authorize the use of the system

      because I was curious who can authorize the use of the system

      the presidential alert was not issued by President Trump directly. But in general, the process calls for the president — or his representative — to authorize FEMA to send an alert on the White House’s behalf.
      [1]

      4 votes
  7. nsz
    (edited )
    Link
    Here we have a once yearly siren test, it's just kind of a quirk you get used to and a bit of a reminder that their is a system in place to protect you in-case shit really hits the fan (landlocked...

    Here we have a once yearly siren test, it's just kind of a quirk you get used to and a bit of a reminder that their is a system in place to protect you in-case shit really hits the fan (landlocked country with no natural disaster risk at all). That said based of what happened with that false nuclear alert—idk if it's a good thing having the whole of the US one click always from thinking it's Armageddon—intentional abuse or not.

    It just seems like over reach I can't really think of a legitimate situation where everyone in the US has to have the same information at exactly the same time. Even with a nuclear strike, you don't need alerts form the west coast clogging up what's relevant to the east, not to mention Hawaii, Alaska or anywhere in between. Disaster situations really need to be dealt with locally, so the correct relevant information can be passed along.

    It sounds like a Hollywood trope—nation wide alert, we are at war–the president has died—it's just kind of silly. TV news should be enough to convey this kind of non time sensitive information – maybe they should be working on improving the quality and reliability of news networks.

    5 votes
  8. [3]
    Comment deleted by author
    Link
    1. papasquat
      Link Parent
      Targeted alerts in the case of a nuclear strike isn't usually feasible. It takes 30 minutes or less for an ICBM to travel from anywhere in the world to anywhere in the world. By the time the...

      Targeted alerts in the case of a nuclear strike isn't usually feasible. It takes 30 minutes or less for an ICBM to travel from anywhere in the world to anywhere in the world. By the time the launch is actually detected and confirmed, it's more like 20 minutes. You won't know where it's aimed until some time in the middle of the midflight phase, with around 10-15 minutes left. With modern warheads, they can be steered and change targets mid course quite effectively. Managing all of that data, making predictions, contacting the local EOCs and coordinating messages to make sure they go out is a tall order.

      A nuclear strike on the mainland US would absolutely be worth a nationwide emergency text. It would likely save hundreds of thousands of lives.

      7 votes
    2. [2]
      Comment deleted by author
      Link Parent
      1. Akir
        Link Parent
        You don't want to be panicked because panicking means you aren't making good decisions. If you are in a falling plane, for instance, the panicked people slow people down, meaning less evacuees and...

        You don't want to be panicked because panicking means you aren't making good decisions. If you are in a falling plane, for instance, the panicked people slow people down, meaning less evacuees and more deaths.

        1 vote
  9. AFineAccount
    Link
    I thought it was an interesting case to examine how media engages with its audiences. I was one of the people that wrote one of those god-awful "the president is texting you" articles that local...

    I thought it was an interesting case to examine how media engages with its audiences. I was one of the people that wrote one of those god-awful "the president is texting you" articles that local news outlets loved to run.

    Usually, articles like that are just ignored. If this were any president, I guarantee you they would have been angled as FEMA sending out a test message. But this time, outlets turned the news into a joke and related it in ways it hasn't been related before. Just because the message included the word "presidential" everyone jumped on the political bandwagon, and so did audiences. The whole thing became a meme, and that was wonderful to see.

    For once, people related to their local and mainstream media in a way that wasn't just for learning information. Journalists, media pros, and audiences laughed together at the absurdity of getting a 'presidential' message in 2018. And I didn't see too many people getting into arguments over the whole thing. It was nice to see.

    4 votes
  10. [4]
    teaearlgraycold
    Link
    I didn't get the alert. Not sure why but I'm not complaining.

    I didn't get the alert. Not sure why but I'm not complaining.

    2 votes
    1. [3]
      determinism
      Link Parent
      Do you have a dumb phone? I didn't get one either, my phone is ~8 years old.

      Do you have a dumb phone? I didn't get one either, my phone is ~8 years old.

      1 vote
      1. [2]
        teaearlgraycold
        Link Parent
        Nope. I have a OnePlus One. My phone's modem (or baseband? Not sure what that part is called) is kinda shit, and it goes in and out (10 seconds of connectivity followed by 10 without). I suppose...

        Nope. I have a OnePlus One. My phone's modem (or baseband? Not sure what that part is called) is kinda shit, and it goes in and out (10 seconds of connectivity followed by 10 without). I suppose if the alert doesn't ping phones for very long I could have just missed the window.

        1. emacsomancer
          Link Parent
          Supposedly, it was a 30 minutes period. But I heard that AT&T customers on the west coast had issues receiving the alert.

          Supposedly, it was a 30 minutes period. But I heard that AT&T customers on the west coast had issues receiving the alert.

  11. cardboard
    Link
    I personally didn't mind it, seems like I get amber alerts like that already. My coworkers on the other hand were genuinely freaked out.

    I personally didn't mind it, seems like I get amber alerts like that already. My coworkers on the other hand were genuinely freaked out.

    2 votes
  12. Flashynuff
    Link
    I didn't get the alert until half an hour after everyone else did. Seems like that would limit its effectiveness as an early warning system quite a bit. I do think the system itself is good -...

    I didn't get the alert until half an hour after everyone else did. Seems like that would limit its effectiveness as an early warning system quite a bit.
    I do think the system itself is good - obviously that would change if it started to be abused for things that aren't important.

    2 votes
  13. [4]
    Comment deleted by author
    Link
    1. StellarV
      Link Parent
      So coincidentally we also had a fire drill in my office building just before this so we were all outside at the same time. The alerts were actually spread out over several minutes. It might have...

      So coincidentally we also had a fire drill in my office building just before this so we were all outside at the same time. The alerts were actually spread out over several minutes. It might have to do with different carriers, cell towers, and signal strength.

      3 votes
    2. [2]
      spit-evil-olive-tips
      Link Parent
      Trump voters got the alert first, to give them a head start in getting to the fallout shelters. /s obviously, but I suspect Trump would do that, if he could.

      Trump voters got the alert first, to give them a head start in getting to the fallout shelters.

      /s obviously, but I suspect Trump would do that, if he could.

      1. EscReality
        Link Parent
        I didn't vote in the last election, I also somehow did not receive an alert. Maybe you are on to something.... Seriously though, I have cell service I wonder why I didn't get it.

        I didn't vote in the last election, I also somehow did not receive an alert.

        Maybe you are on to something....

        Seriously though, I have cell service I wonder why I didn't get it.

        1 vote
  14. dv8
    Link
    I wasn't aware it was coming, so I was a little confused since I've never seen a presidential alert before. Not a fan of these kinds of alerts, though. A month or two ago I was in the grocery...

    I wasn't aware it was coming, so I was a little confused since I've never seen a presidential alert before.

    Not a fan of these kinds of alerts, though. A month or two ago I was in the grocery store and it was raining pretty heavily, and everybody's phones began beeping at the same time due to a flash flood warning. It was obnoxious.

    1 vote
  15. boot20
    Link
    I think it's a waste of time and money. We already have a various emergency and alert system and, generally, emergencies are localized. I don't understand what the point of this system is and what...

    I think it's a waste of time and money. We already have a various emergency and alert system and, generally, emergencies are localized.

    I don't understand what the point of this system is and what function it provides that others don't or can't. I feel like it is a waste of time and tax dollars.

    1 vote
  16. zaluzianskya
    Link
    I got the alert twice and it interrupted the music on the radio. Talk about overkill.

    I got the alert twice and it interrupted the music on the radio. Talk about overkill.

  17. stephen
    Link
    My question is why on earth is this needed

    My question is why on earth is this needed

  18. [2]
    StellarTabi
    Link
    No thanks, I hated it.

    No thanks, I hated it.

    4 votes
    1. StellarTabi
      Link Parent
      So like everyone at my office just stood up and made the same joke about not wanting Trump tweets right to their phone now lol. Great solidarity.

      So like everyone at my office just stood up and made the same joke about not wanting Trump tweets right to their phone now lol. Great solidarity.

      4 votes
  19. Removed by admin: 3 comments by 2 users
    Link