Using Twitter to share knowledge

Due partially to some distribution glitches, but primarily to some panic buying on the part of locals, there is a gasoline shortage in Middle Tennessee. Many stations have plastic bags over pump hoses and those with supplies have lines of cars backed up for blocks. It has a very early 1970s gasoline embargo feel to it.

One thing Nashville has is a lot of active users of Twitter all over the region.

So about an hour ago, I suggested in a tweet that anyone who knows of a gasoline station with a supply, post it on Twitter (called a tweet) and to include the closest thing Twitter has to a “tag,” – a # , hashtag – #nashvillegas.

Here’s the result: A real-time, updated list of gasoline stations with gas:

Where is gas available in Middle Tennessee?

(Update: Due to Twitter’s changes in API usages, this link no longer works.)

Sidenote: This Nashville phenomenon is a great study in the power of rumors to drive market-behavior. While gasoline is available all around us, the word-of-mouth engine is suggesting it will be days before our supplies are re-stocked, which leads, of course, to more panic buying.