‘Get Out, Keep Running’: Club Turns To Facebook During Mass Shooting

A nightclub in Orlando, Florida used Facebook to warn patrons after a gunman opened fire on Saturday night

Friends and family members embrace following the massacre. — REUTERS
Jun 12, 2016 at 8:13 AM ET

A gunman opened fire in a popular gay nightclub in Florida on Saturday night, leaving approximately 50 people dead before being shot and killed by police. Amid the chaos, the nightclub, attendees, friends and family of club-goers, and concerned outsiders all took to Facebook to share information.

The gunman, identified by authorities as Omar Mateen, began firing around 2 a.m. at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando. Shortly after 2 a.m., Pulse Orlando posted on its Facebook page: “Everyone get out of pulse and keep running.” Hundreds commented on the post, one claiming to have escaped from the venue, while others expressed concern for family members believed to be at the venue at the time of the shooting.

Vocativ found several other Facebook posts from employees at Pulse Orlando. One user, who according to her Facebook profile works as a photographer at the venue, used the platform to request a head count from fellow employees. She later wrote in another post: “Someone walked into our home last night and opened fire. And I hope they burn in hell for it and that all of my friends that are not texting me back are safe.”

One Facebook user warned others to “stay away, and call everyone you know.” Another user, Roxy Andrews, who claims to perform at the venue, posted that two people had escaped from the venue via an AC unit, but asked friends to “keep praying for the others stuck inside.”