Suggestion for an enhanced emergency MP backup site

Discussion in 'Talk To Me' started by MSPeconomist, Apr 25, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    With the Amazon cloud failure last week, there was some talk of the possibility of a small MP backup website with its own url hosted on different servers (at HOM?) that people could access if there's another cloud failure. I think it could be a good idea to consider taking this a step further and trying to provide major travel emergency information on such a site, while making it prominent for regular MP users at the same time. (Perhaps an alert button could be added to the home and forum pages to indicate when there's some major event reported.)

    What I envision would be a special area on MP, mirrored on the backup site, that would be reserved for the sort of crucial news impacting travel that people really need before going to the airport. Such news would include airline suspensions of service, airline/airport/transportation strikes, major security alerts, evacuations, earthquakes, hurricanes and other major disasters, etc. One model would be to permit MP members to post in this space, but with the understanding that it's only for urgent matters, so that HOM staff wouldn't be expected to monitor anything extra. (Usually someone here notices and reports on such events quickly, as happened when STL was closed due to wind damage over the weekend. However, even though it was reported in several fora, this information wasn't at all prominent on MP. If someone were in the habit of checking MP when checking flight status before leaving for the airport--as I learned to do with FT, where really major stuff usually appears on the landing page naturally--they probably would not have noticed anything about the STL problems unless they had spent a lot of time checking new posts in various fora.)

    A more ambitious version would be to try include most of the type of small news items that tend to appear in the corner of the travel section in the International Herald Tribune, such as listing major festivals and bank holidays in various countries. This would require more of someone's time to the extent that it couldn't be automated easily.
     
  2. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Although I agree that having a backup would be excellent for those of us that cannot go long without a fix, having anything other than a read-only alternative for status updates would be troublesome when it's time to reconcile with the full site.

    With that said, I think for the sort of thing that you suggest maybe twitter or even facebook would suffice, provided that someone stays on top of it for frequent updates. I personally kept checking the MP twitter feed for updates and didn't see anything of interest, even after the site went back up.

    I think once you get to a certain level -- and the argument can be made that MP reached that level a while back -- having a backup/status page somewhere is a definite must.
     
  3. MSPeconomist
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    Remember that not everyone does twitter or has a facebook account. I'd also worry that the sort of travel-related urgent information would get lost there. How would one find such stuff on twitter?
     
  4. ACMM
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    I agree - I do not want to and will not get a twitter nor facebook account solely for this. That is not a requirement.
     
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  5. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Well you can view/read a twitter feed without an account... the whole point is to make a relatively robust status-only page independent of MP "just in case"

    Don't get me wrong, it'd be nice to have a "backup site" in case something bad happens and the site can't be brought online quickly, but in my experience that's incredibly difficult to achieve with "fluid" sites like this one that rely on a db backend hosted somewhere.

    And at the end of the day you don't need a twitter feed to host every single MP-related thing going on and announcing the latest AA promo or whatever... I'm talking about a simplified read-only "here's what's going on" feed that people can access that carries only the major news.
     

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