Where Were You

Where Were You

Part of a series on September 11th, 2001 Attacks. [View Related Entries]

Updated Sep 09, 2016 at 04:28PM EDT by Don.

Added Sep 11, 2015 at 03:30PM EDT by Ari Spool.

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Where Were You, often expressed as the hashtag #WhereWereYou, is a question asked by Americans each anniversary of the September 11th, 2001 Attacks to share their memories of what they were doing at the exact moment they found out about the plane collisions.


On November 7th, 2001, country singer Alan Jackson released the song "Where Were You When the World Stopped Turning," a memorial song about the September 11th, 2001 attacks months before. The song won the Grammy Award for Best Country Song in 2002 and Song of the Year from many different country music song associations. As of April 2015, the song has sold 368,000 digital copies in the United States.[1]


Every year on the anniversary of the attacks, the song experiences a peak in popularity. In 2015, the hashtag first appeared in this context overnight between September 9th and 10th, with people beginning to tweet about their experiences.[2] The top tweet was from Speaker of the House John Boehner, who attached a video his office had prepared for the occasion:

His tweet received 56 favorites and 62 retweets. Other political figures, like former New York Governor George Pataki,[3] also shared their stories, along with many people who claimed to be past and present residents of New York City and many who claimed that the event had changed their entire lives in some way.[4] By 2 pm EST on September 11th, 2015, the hashtag had been used almost 10,000 times.[5] The spread and use of the hashtag was covered in both NBC News and online magazine Heavy.[6][7] In addition, there are at least 150 different "Where were you on 9/11" threads on Reddit, and the question is commonly asked on other forums as a "serious" type of inquiry.[8]

Various Examples

涩w Winston Smith WinstonS6079W Follow I was supposed to be in NY on 9/11 but b/c my wife had to travel, I cancelled the trip; was feeding my baby that morning #WhereWereYou 11:49 AM -11 Sep 2015 わ t319 ★78 Dustin Franks @dustin6596 Follow I was six years old I, asked my dad why people would do something like that. And that's why I decided to try join the Army #WhereWereYou 11:56 AM -11 Sep 2015 わ 2 6 ★46 Patrick Varas @pvaras Follow Walking to my ofice in the South Tower when the plane hit. May not be writing this if I was on time to work that day. #WhereWeroY ou 10:59 AM -11 Sep 2015 わ 108 ★225 President Trump @Writeintrump Follow I don't know where Hillary was on 9/11 but it's safe to say she was probably wearing a hideous pantsuit. #WhereWere'You 1:52 PM-11 Sep 2015 わ 2 45 ★118 Josh Olin @JD_2020 Follow My dad's plane, grounded on tarmac in Chicago 14yrs ago. I remember waiting in the Principal's office for his call. It came. #WhereWereYou 1:03 PM-11 Sep 2015 わ 7 ★55 Alex Sembra @alexsembra Follow I was working @CNN taking in every feed. I saw stuff I still havent seen on TV or docs. Still haunted by it. #WhereWereYou 11:21 AM -11 Sep 2015 わ t31 ★2

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