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Ambient AMBER? Child Abduction Warning System Comes to Facebook

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, January 12 2011

AMBER Alerts are coming to Facebook. Started in 1996 after the abduction and murder of a 9 year-old girl in Texas, the early-warning public notification system for abducted children first made use of the public Emergency Broadcast System (old folks among us, remember those "This is a test..." warnings on TV and radio?) and has since spread to other mediums -- text messages and roadside digital billboards among them. It has worked remarkably well. Baking the alerts into our Facebook walls, one imagines, might serve to slip them into the daily lives of millions of people in a way that's fairly low on the invasiveness scale yet still sufficiently attention grabbing. Facebook is livestreaming the announcement event above. And you can sign up for state-by-state AMBER Alerts on Facebook.