In Norway the air raid sirens are tested at exactly 12 noon every year or so. They haven’t been needed since WW2, but the tests ensure that new generations are reminded that peace is not a given. Now the authorities are considering using SMS messages to warn the population of invasion or attacks using chemical, nuclear or biological weapons. The image has stuck with me since I read about it in Aftenposten yesterday: just imagine everyone’s mobile phones beeping at once, everyone reaching into their pockets, everyone reading the same message at the same time. And then what? Panic? A calm orderly procession towards the old airraid shelters dug in cellars and mountains, long since turned into rock clubs?

3 thoughts on “SMS replacing sirens?

  1. mcb

    It somehow lacks the drama and scale of ab air raid siren. It’s amazing how chilling that sound is, even to a generation who have not experienced war first hand.

  2. Anders Jacobsen

    Something tells me that in a crisis situation like the ones cited, one would rather reserve the telecommunications infrastructure for more urgent matters….? The US has launched a list of some 50 000 “super users” whose phones will have priority access to the cell phone network(s) in times of crisis – now THAT would be an idea for Norway (seeing the endless debate on implementing secure, closed TETRA(?) networks…)

  3. Eiriks forfatterblogg

    SMS-tyfoner
    Jill skriver om et genialt forslag fra Sivilforsvaret. PÂ nettsiden 11. september 2002 – hva er gjort? stÂr det blant

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