Tearful Tintin emerges as symbol of solidarity
A tearful, Tintin, quickly emerged as a symbol of solidarity in the chaotic aftermath of the Brussels bombings as social media users worldwide took to Facebook and other Web streams for check ins by loved ones potentially in harm's way.
On Twitter, on Instagram and elsewhere around the internet, the red-haired reporter in his signature trench coat with his white dog Snowy - the creations of Belgian cartoonist Herge - were shared. Some cartoonists drew "too soon" criticism for depicting the stars of the comic series "The Adventures of Tintin" as bloodied and battered.
Others on social media borrowed from the January 2015 Charlie Hebdo tragedy, using the hashtag "JeSuisBruxelles," or "I am Brussels," just as those after the Paris attacks did when spreading the sentiment "JeSuisCharlie."
Facebook, meanwhile, activated its "safety check" system yet again to help yesterday within hours of the three deadly explosions at the Brussels airport and a metro station.
The system can provide an easy way for people to mark themselves as "safe" after a major disaster or crisis so that people searching for them will know they are unharmed.