EMS Annual Meeting Abstracts
Vol. 18, EMS2021-414, 2021, updated on 18 Jun 2021
EMS Annual Meeting 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Weather forecast on social media platforms

Zoltán Üveges
Zoltán Üveges
  • Hungarian Meteorological Service, Hungary

At the Hungarian Meteorological Service, three years ago we established a media meteorology group of forecasters with my lead. Our main goal is presenting the latest weather forecasts, interpreting weather related news and informative articles on various social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and YouTube. One of our most popular types of forecasts – which was the topic of the award - is the daily weather forecast short video. What makes it quite different from and more authentic than a usual TV forecast is that our team members are forecasters, content editors and weather presenters in one person. Besides being the head of the group, I am also responsible for creating and designing the visual content.

We believe that forecasts have to be presented in the most simple language. However, weather related questions rarely can be answered with a simple yes or no. That is when probability forecasts come in handy. Presenting plume diagrams, probability maps help us smoothen the expectations of the public. With probabilities, we can speak of the medium range outlook on state of the art scientific basis, we don’t have to tell one single value for the 6th or 7th day maximum temperature and later receive the negative comments. I think it is important not to feel shame to say „we don’t know exactly” the details of the expected weather. Nowadays, communication of uncertainties is one of the main objectives of forecasters, and this sometimes requires that ungrateful task, too.

In our experience weather forecasts appearing indirectly in the media or press fail to contain uncertainties, information is usually transformed and mostly the worst case scenario is the only one which is presented. In order to avoid it, we try to reach the public directly via social media platforms and try to produce content with eye-catching headlines that is ready to use for the media.

The European Meteorological Society Media Weather Forecast Award gave us good feedback that we are on the right way of presenting weather, communicating probabilities in a scientific but understandable form for the public.

How to cite: Üveges, Z.: Weather forecast on social media platforms, EMS Annual Meeting 2021, online, 6–10 Sep 2021, EMS2021-414, https://doi.org/10.5194/ems2021-414, 2021.

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