NOUS41 KWBC 011411



Public Information Statement

National Weather Service Headquarters Washington DC

1011 AM EDT Wed Jun 1 2011


TO:      Subscribers:

         -Family of Services

         -NOAA Weather Wire Service

         -Emergency Managers Weather Information Network


         -Other NWS Partners, Users, and Employees


FROM:    Iftikhar Jamil

         NWS Chief Information Officer


SUBJECT: NWS Presence on Twitter


NWS is exploring use of Twitter to provide microblogging services. Twitter is a commonly used social networking service that allows participants to share information with other users. Microblogging services like Twitter serve as an important source of real-time news updates.  The short nature of updates allows users to post news items quickly, reaching their audience in seconds. Because microblogging services are two-way, readers of posts can reply to posts with various responses, such as a weather report with location, time and images/videos.  For the NWS, aggregate analysis of this data provides information on storm evolution, and partner/public perceptions and response. 


NWS has already experimented with collection of storm reports via Twitter ( and is now beginning to explore the potential for use of Twitter to communicate weather information. Because exploration of possible use of Twitter cannot be done outside of the public Twitter environment, our prototyping efforts will be publicly visible.


Over the next several weeks, prototype Twitter feeds will be established for the following sites:


NWS Norman OK
NWS LMRFC (Lower Mississippi River Forecast Center)
NWS Pleasant Hill MO
NWS Salt Lake City UT
NWS Charleston SC
NWS Western Region
NWS Honolulu HI
NHC Atlantic | NHC Pacific - The National Hurricane Center will run 2 accounts, basin specific.  


Work on these Twitter feeds is in preparation for an experimental service that will be open for public comment and review. The period of prototyping, expected to last approximately through September 30, 2011, will enable NWS staff to become proficient at maintaining a useful presence on Twitter and will allow a period of service adjustments as staff determine the level of automation needed, type of information to post, and how to effectively address problems.  NWS will provide more information and initiation of a public comment and review period when a decision is made to offer this service on a more consistent basis.


Please note that as a prototype service, these Twitter feeds may be discontinued at any time, the amount and content of information provided may change, and the frequency of "tweets" may vary and is not guaranteed. 


Tweets will be posted on a time-available basis and may be extremely limited during periods of severe weather. In addition, users should not rely on this service as the primary means of receiving NWS alerts and warnings of hazardous weather.  NWS alerts and warnings are available on NOAA Weather Radio and our official website:


Disclaimers regarding NWS use of social media services can be found at:


If you have comments or questions regarding this public information statement, please contact:


  Ronald C. Jones

  National Weather Service

  1325 East West Highway

  Silver Spring Maryland 20910

  301-713-3513 x 110


For technical questions regarding the Twitter prototype, please contact:


  Darone Jones

  National Weather Service

  125 S State Street Room 1235

  Salt Lake City, UT 84138-1102



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