Saturday, August 15, 2009

Anchorage business owners Tweetup to help fire victim

The Alaska Journal of Commerce posted a story by Gina Romero about the Tasty Tweets event I have blogged and literally spammed Facebook and Twitter about. Though I have never met Ryan Stanley in person, I do consider him a friendly acquaintance if not at least a friend. As I read his, and other updates on the morning of June 1st this year, I could not believe when he was "tweeting" about his house burning down. At first, I even thought it was some sort of metaphor for something else going on. As we found out later and saw the pictures, the family tragedy became all too real. Here's an excerpt from the article:
If you are on Twitter and follow other Alaskans, you may have noticed a series of tweets about a bake sale and Tweetup, called Tasty Tweets, set for Aug. 29 at Bella Boutique in Anchorage.

Valette McLay of Anchorage is an avid Twitter user. She helped spearhead Tasty Tweets, a bake sale and Tweetup for fire victim Ryan Stanley of Juneau. Photo/Gina Romero/For the Journal
It is the latest in a series of Tweetups - using Twitter to organize real-live meet-ups - that have been held in Anchorage since January, said John Proffitt, who is creator of, a Web site to inform those interested in local social media events.

Proffitt, who is known among Alaska's Twitter users, has organized a majority of the local Tweetups.

"I feel a kinship with many of the people I meet online, especially those I choose to follow on Twitter, and organizing these events lets me pay back that community for the affinity I have for the group," he said.

Ryan Stanley said he also feels a kinship with people in Alaska's online community. Stanley, who lives in Juneau, said he uses Twitter specifically to connect with Alaskans. Although he has not been able to attend the Anchorage Tweetups, Stanley said he stays involved with the group by looking at photos and by reading posts about the events.

"For the largest state in the union, it is the smallest state in the union. It's, I guess, a kind of unique thing you get to have a community that is spread out over such a large distance," he said.

Stanley is a social media super user. Twitter, Facebook and FriendFeed are a few of many ways he stays connected. He uses Twitter to network with Alaskans, Facebook for national and international contacts, and FriendFeed to interact with his professional circle.

His social networks are linked, so that one post goes to a variety of people. On the morning of June 1, 2009, a series of posts went out that touched many of Stanley's followers.

"OMG. I'm standing here watching my house burn. Unbelievable."


"Holy Crap."

"RIP Pink House."

Stanley posted these in the early morning hours as he watched fire destroy his home and everything inside. The fire, determined as intentionally set, originated in the laundry room of his neighbor's apartment-style dwelling on Basin Road, Fire Marshal Dan Jager said. Since then, Stanley, his wife, Laura Hosey, and 3-year-old daughter, Meadow, have been trying to rebuild their lives.

You can read the rest of the article here:

As I keep asking, please help in anyway you can.

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