Texting Post-Katrina

In the all-but-total communications breakdown that has followed Hurricane Katrina’s devastation of the Gulf Coast, text messaging was a rare standout — because it actually worked.

Blogger and New Orleans resident Ernie the Attorney (profiled here on the BlogPulse Blog) reported that he found SMS worked, though cell phones didn’t.

Interesting, too, that text messaging is playing a role as companies try to help in the aftermath. Verizon Wireless is letting subscribers use SMS to donate $5 to the American Red Cross (the dough is added to the monthly bill). And DIRECTV has launched a dedicated satellite TV channel (Channel 100) for information about the relief situation. It’s allowing people to text message short code “48433” and have their missives to family and friends scroll across the bottom of the screen. (That feature is enabled by GoldPocket Wireless.)

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