While Twittering news events as they unfold has become increasingly commonplace in the past few months, Sunday’s massive power failure in Sydney became — at least for those following on the social networking Service — less about gridlocked traffic and people stuck in elevators and more about surviving a zombie apocalypse.
Anyone searching for actual information instead was hit with a meltdown of tweets such as:
failnetorg TODAYS BLACKOUT IN SYDNEY IS CAUSED BY ZOMBIES ATTEMPTING TO STEAL THE COPPERZ FROM THE UNDERGROUND TUNNELS
jaketay RT @mshirbin #Sydney #CBD #blackout brings #zombies to town. Song Thriller heard over the emergency system – Yet another state govt. bungle.
GregoryWebster #Zombies are attcking Sydney during the #blackout. Shoot. Them. In. The Head…….arghhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, splurt,splat
PixyMisa Newsflash: Sydney, Australia: Reports that government planning to nuke city to contain zombie threat "overstated" say sources. #blackout
maenad_au RT @bikingbadger I've heard you can kill #zombies by hitting them with repeated social media marketing tips.. it's slow but effective
And, in a nod to Edgar Wright's zombie-comedy "Shaun of the Dead" …
getbiglittlekid Good thing I saved those Sade records #blackout #zombies
Within minutes of the power outage at 4:45 p.m. local time, hundreds of similarly themed tweets flooded the network, creating an impromptu alternate reality in the vein of a George A. Romero flick.
One early commenter, who said he was tempted to start a “War of the Worlds”-style hoax, was quickly eclipsed by a barrage of Twitter users doing just that spontaneously.
And indeed, within two hours, the three most searched-for words across Twitter’s 6 million worldwide users were “Sydney”, “Zombie” and “Blackout.”