Where Were You? Students' Stories of the Boston Marathon Bombing • An ICMPA Media Literacy Project
I was sitting in my dorm room avoiding doing any homework like a typical college student – going back and forth between Twitter and Facebook. While doing this I ended up reading a post by a girl that I went to high school with, but didn’t know that well. I knew this girl was from Boston and remember her being the type of person that always had a Red Sox logo on something she was wearing. At first glance I thought nothing of her post, it didn’t make much sense.
A couple of minutes later I start seeing the hashtag #PrayForBoston on almost every new tweet. Still in the dark as to what was happening I went on one of my favorite websites, reddit.com, only to see a post entitled “Boston Marathon Bombing: Live Updates”. All three of the websites that I visit on a regular basis were all talking about Boston. I immediately clicked on this post on Reddit and began to read in shock about what was developing. I remember wondering if this was going to be “the next 9/11 tragedy”.
As I continued reading and viewing the media Reddit was putting up I came across multiple photos, videos, and links to citizen-ran aid groups to assist in the bombings. I remember clicking on a photo album that had been uploaded minutes earlier and already had used gigabytes of bandwidth from the thousands of hits it had received. The pictures were all very explicit showing the area around where the bomb went off with pools of blood and people on the ground crying. It was after seeing this graphic photo that I knew that everyone in America was going to be from Boston that day. The live thread was continually being updated, yet no one knew who orchestrated the bombing – with no finger to point I wondered whom we were going to lash out at; because it was clear that there would be no rest until the people responsible were found.