Social Media Key In Search For Lauren Spierer

Twitter, Facebook Buzzing With Latest Leads

Hundreds of people have converged on Bloomington to help in the search for missing Indiana University student Lauren Spierer, but tens of thousands more are leading the charge online, where social media has proven critical.

The search for Spierer has generated buzz across Facebook and Twitter, where the hashtag #FindLauren has been a top trending topic in recent days, 6News' Stacia Matthews reported.

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Manned by family and friends, Twitter profile @NewsOnLaurenS, which has more than 11,000 followers, is helping distribute fliers and provide volunteers information about how to join the search in the city.

The effort has even garnered support from celebrities, including Ryan Seacrest, Denise Richards, Chris Daughtry, Eliza Dushku, Miranda Lambert and Scott Baio, who retweeted pleas to find Spierer, who was last seen at about 4:30 a.m. Friday as she walked toward her apartment from a friend's home.

Indianapolis Colts owner Jim Irsay tweeted Wednesday that he's offering a $10,000 reward "for serious info that solves" Spierer's case.

Spierer's family and friends have set up a website to assist with search efforts and an active group on Facebook is also providing information.

"I'm getting emails from hundreds of people that I know all over the country to Rob," said family friend Jay Friedman, who works with Spierer's father, Rob. "I hope we find her quickly, because this is absolutely torture."

The story itself has gone international, with mentions of the search on online media outlets as varied as The Daily Mail, Huffington Post and sports blogs highlighting IU men's basketball coach Tom Crean's involvement in the search.

Reporters from Spierer's native New York have also come to Bloomington.

"The more we get the word out, maybe we can offer some help, some solace to the family, some comfort to the people at home who can't get over here," said Lisa Reyes with News 12 in Long Island, N.Y.

Police and Spierer's family asked anyone with information to call the Bloomington police tip line at 812-339-4477. A second tip line was set up through "America's Most Wanted" at 800-CRIMETV.