August  27,  2011   Contact:  202-­‐282-­‐8010   FEMA  OFFERS  TIPS  FOR  DEALING  WITH  POTENTIALLY   DEVASTATING  EFFECTS  OF  STORM-­RELATED  DISORDER   Electronic  Device  Withdrawal  Induced  Neurosis  (EDWIN)  May  Reach   Epidemic  Proportions  as  the  Result  of  Internet  Outages  caused  by   Hurricane  Irene     WASHINGTON  -­‐  As  Hurricane  Irene  prepares  to  batter  the  East  Coast,   Federal  disaster  officials  have  warned  that  Internet  outages  could  force   people  to  interact  with  other  people  for  the  first  time  in  years.  Federal   officials  are  concerned  that  these  Internet  outages  may  result  in  an   epidemic-­‐level  outbreak  of  EDWIN  (Electronic  Device  Withdrawal   Induced  Neurosis),  a  potentially  life-­‐threatening  syndrome  that  can   often  effect  entire  households  within  minutes  after  a  power  outage   and/or  final  discharge  of  battery-­‐powered  devices.       “EDWIN  is  not  to  be  taken  lightly,”  warns  FEMA  administrator  Craig   Fugate.  “In  today’s  digital  society  it  can  strike  anyone  and  it  can  strike   quickly.  We  are  all  going  to  have  to  be  knowledgeable  about  its   symptoms,  be  aware  how  to  treat  or  reduce  its  affects,  and  be  vigilant   about  it  in  our  friends,  family  members,  and  loved  ones.  Unchecked,   EDWIN  could  be  devastating  to  our  economy  and  our  lives  as  citizens  of   this  great  nation.”    

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In  order  to  avoid  a  potentially-­‐disastrous  outbreak  of  uncontrolled   EDWIN  in  the  wake  of  power  outages  caused  by  hurricane  Irene,   President  Obama  has  authorized  local,  state,  and  national  officials  to   employ  “any  means  necessary”  to  contain  unchecked  outbreaks  of   EDWIN  which  often  result  in  looting,  violence,  and  strained  household   relationships.       “We  are  a  great  nation  made  up  of  great  people,”  states  President   Obama,  “We  are  strong  because  we  are  one  people,  connected   regardless  or  race,  creed,  or  political  affiliation.  Over  the  past  decade   and  a  half  our  connections  have  been  made  even  stronger  by  links  in  the   Information  Superhighway.  We  must  not  be  drawn  apart  when  the   onramps  to  that  highway  are  blocked  by  natural  disasters  such  as   Hurricane  Irene.  Just  like  the  pioneers  who  settled  this  great  country,   we  must  learn,  when  necessary,  to  take  a  new  trail  to  get  where  we’re   going.”     In  order  to  help  reduce  the  effects  of  EDWIN  in  the  wake  of  Hurricane   Irene,  FEMA  and  the  Department  of  Homeland  Security  offer  Citizens   the  following  14  tips  for  dealing  with  the  impact  of  EDWIN  in  their   homes:       1. Know  and  be  able  to  identify  the  symptoms  of  EDWIN:   a. Involuntary  muscle  spasms  in  the  fingers,  particularly  the   thumbs.   b. Rage  (ex.  smashing  or  striking  non-­‐responsive  electronic   devices,  yelling/screaming,  irritability)   c. Enlarged  pupils   d. Non  sequiturs/Nonsensical  rambling  (ex.  “LOL”  “WTF”  “GR-­‐ eight”  "Tweet")   e. Erratic  and/or  compulsive  behavior  (ex.  compulsively   holding  household  objects  to  the  head,  attempting  to   “swipe”  printed  material  in  order  to  turn  the  page,  aimless   wandering  accompanied  with  loud  vocalizations,   compulsive  keyboarding)   2. Proceed  slowly  when  initiating  contact  with  those  suffering   from  EDWIN.  They  can  often  move  or  react  unpredictably.  Those  

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who  are  habituated  to  video  gaming  may  be  able  to  move  quite   quickly  due  to  their  highly-­‐developed  hand-­‐eye  coordination.   3. Limit  initial  attempts  at  conversation  to  no  more  than  140   characters.   4. Try  to  avoid  PANIC  (Panic  Aggravating  Non-­essential  or   Inappropriate  Comments)  phrases.  Phrases  such  as  “is  that   your  phone  ringing?”  “N00B!”  “What’s  on?”  or  even  “Call  me!”  can   provoke  extreme  reactions.  Avoid  mentioning  popular  social   networking  Internet  web  sites  such  as  “Twitter,”  “Facebook,”  or   “FourSquare.”   5. Stay  with  neutral  topics  until  you  are  sure  that  mutual  rapport   has  been  established  and  the  EDWIN  victim  has  established   control  of  themselves.  Do  not  discuss  television,  video  games,   mobile  phones,  texting,  or  other  topics  pertaining  to  electronic   media.   6. Remain  aware  that  the  person  you  are  conversing  with  may   not  be  aware  of  your  presence  and  could  very  possibly  think   they  are  addressing  characters  from  their  favorite  television   shows,  movies,  or  video  games.     7. Be  prepared  to  stop  speaking  if  the  EDWIN  victim  indicates   they  would  like  to  speak.  This  is  known  as  “listening”  and  may   require  significant  practice  to  master.   8. EDWIN  victims  are  often  sexually  frustrated  due  to  lack  of   contact  with  Internet  pornography,  “booty  calls,”  and  “sexting.”  If   you  are  confined  to  your  dwelling  with  a  person  suffering  from   EDWIN,  be  aware  that  every  attempt  at  conversation  and  every   move  you  make  could  potentially  arouse  the  victim.  Wear  modest   clothing  (sweat  suits,  “footie”  pajamas,  or  housedresses  are  good   choices)  and  avoid  exposing  any  parts  of  your  body.     9. Be  aware  that  grouchiness  or  hostility  can  arise  within   minutes  disconnection  from  the  Internet.     10. If  you  feel  yourself  suffering  symptoms  of  EDWIN,  try  to   remain  calm,  take  several  deep  breaths,  close  your  eyes,  and   try  to  picture  a  screen  located  just  inside  of  your  eyelids.   Visualize  your  favorite  entertainment  on  that  screen.  Be  warned,   however:  your  first  experience  with  “imagination”  may  be   disorienting.   11. Avoid  children  and  young  adults  at  all  costs!  An   NIH/MIT  Media  Lab/NBC  study  has  found  that  children  and  
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young  adults  between  the  ages  of  2-­‐28  are  99.723%  likely  to   develop  severe  EDWIN  within  minutes  of  loss  of  contact  with   electronic  entertainment  and  information  devices.  Due  to  this  age   group’s  lack  of  self  control  and  dependence  on  information   devices  to  maintain  their  support  networks,  these  populations  are   often  the  most  severely  affected  and  are  likely  to  exhibit  the  most   severe  symptoms.   12. Prepare  in  advance  for  loss  of  Internet  access  by  laying   in  a  supply  of  “books.”  “Reading”  “books”  has  been  shown  to   drastically  reduce  the  symptoms  of  EDWIN.  In  some  cases  it  may   be  necessary  to  work  up  to  “books”  by  introducing  other  print-­‐ based  media  (old  issues  of  US  TODAY  or  children’s  “picture-­‐ books”  are  particularly  effective)  to  EDWIN  victims.   13. If  you  have  access  to  analog-­based  “board”  or  “card”   games,  these  can  often  be  used  to  reduce  the  symptoms  of   EDWIN  in  its  victims.  However,  be  careful  that  these  games  are   not  based  on  popular  forms  of  electronic  entertainment.  Games   such  as  “Warhammer,”  “Dungeons  and  Dragons,”  as  well  as  any   games  based  around  farming,  Mafia,  or  enraged  avian  themes  are   to  be  avoided.   14. In  most  circumstances,  symptoms  of  EDWIN  will  begin   to  abate  within  48-­72  hours  after  the  loss  of  screen  contact.   Keep  the  victim  confortable,  gradually  attempt  introducing   “books”  or  other  printed  materials,  distract  them  with  analog   games  and  encourage  the  victim  to  sleep  as  much  as  possible.   EDWIN  sufferers  should  avoid  all  alcoholic  or  caffeinated   beverages,  though  increased  consumption  of  alcohol  for   caregivers  is  advised.       Citizens  who  believe  that  they  or  anyone  they  know  IRL  is  suffering   from  the  effects  of  EDWIN,  please  visit  www.fema.gov  or  contact  us  via   email  at  Edwin_Help@fema.gov.     ###      

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