Aljazeera Labs Beta Launched Crowdsourced Mapping Mashup For The War On Gaza

9 Jan, 2009

As the crisis continues in Gaza, Aljazeera Labs is continuing their innovation. This time they recently beta launched crowdsource mapping mashup “Mapping the War on Gaza” service, in collaboration with Ushahidi who  have successfully used their platform to crowdsource information during recent crisis in Kenya and South Africa.

The platform allows people around the world to submit news related to Gaza to the service as it happens, via the web, twitter or mobile, which in turn after some fact checking gets displayed on the interactive map along a time line.

Mapping the War on Gaza” displays incidents on a map that are Mashedup with Microsoft Virtual Earth, you can click the dots on the  map to view the reports.  Incidents can be filtered into many categories such as Twitter Reports, Deaths, Israeli Ground Forces, Civilians, Air Strikes, Palestinian Causalities, Rocket Attacks, etc.  For example a recent report says “Death toll in Gaza rises to 763 after  50 more bodies were discovered”, as one the Israeli casualties a recent report says “Israeli Army says three Israeli soldiers were killed in attacks in the Gaza Strip”.

On any report, users can help verify if the report is credible or not by voting it up or down. Moreover users can comment and discuses each report and view additional reports and related mainstream News of Incident.

Reporting an incident to “Mapping the War on Gaza” via Text Message (SMS) in Palestine using the Jawwal network, you can send a text message(starting with the word GAZA) to the number: 37191. Anywhere else in the world, you can send a text message (starting with the word GAZA) to the number: +45609910303 or via Twitter by replying to the service official twitter account.  If you have Video or Images of breaking news events, you can submit the content via the YourViews (Aljzeera English version of Sharek)  or via the email to:

There are other services on the web the caters to the war on Gaza one of them is Aljazeera new area widget that you can add to your blog or website. The widget displays recent Palestinian and Israeli casualties. Though ArabCrunch could not verify if this is a service form Aljazeera. The other one I was notified of is Support Gaza which displays graphical images and vidoes of the recent casualties in Gaza, if you came across a new website that utilizes web 2.0 for the war on Gaza please mention them in your comment.

Aljazeera Labs, has recently launched a number of Web 2.0 and Mobile 2.0 tools and application that goes from crowdsourcing into delivering both Aljazeera English and Arabic news anywhere @ anytime.

The newly launched services include a Podcast, where you can subscribe to Al Jazeera podcasts and have your favorite Al Jazeera programmes delivered straight to you. “Listening Post” is the first podcast available in English, and there are around 5 Arabic podcast shows such as the popular show “AlItijah Al Makas”.

On the Mobile side, Al Jazeera Network have partnered with Sony Ericsson, where several Sony Ericsson handheld devices on the market today in the MENA region will have an Al Jazeera RSS feed already installed.  While Al Jazeera Arabic and English Mobile websites will be released very soon in beta versions. According to the Aljazeera Labs website: “The first stage of development has been completed and we are currently in the final stages of internal testing.”

On the IM side Al Jazeera Labs has beta launched IM Bot where you can get breaking news sent to your email or IM client. Currently it works with gtalk.

Some of the relatively older services Aljazeera labs has launched were mentioned by ArabCrunch here, which include an iPhone App, Facebook app, YouTube Channels, and Twitter channels for Arabic and English content.  The most recent Twitter additions are:
*Al Jazeera’s Breaking News channel on Twitter.
* Twitter Channels  to interact directly with Aljazeera English presenters and shows.

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  1. Gaith Saqer  |  January 10th, 2009 at 10:30 PM #

    Welcome Slashdot visitors plz subscribe to ArabCrunch RSS feed and keep visiting us :):

  2. Patrick  |  January 11th, 2009 at 2:58 AM #

    Thanks for the site.

    I believe information like this is necessary to help all of us develop a more objective view of what is happening.

    As a once staunch Israel supporter, over the years I’ve been more and more disturbed by what has been happening to the Palestinians.

    Hamas may well be firing rockets into Israel, people may well be having to seek refuge in shelters but this disproportionate response by Israel does nothing to improve the situation and only inflames the tensions and embeds further hatred.

    This situation will not be ‘won’ by either side using the methods they currently employ.

    Creating a virtual ghetto of dispossessed Palestinians will not result in a ‘just solution’. It’s not even a solution – just a stop-gap with nasty flash-back.

    The British realised this behaviour didn’t work and they and the IRA have since come to an agreement (and the British were in Ireland from the 11th Century).

    Israel and the Palestinians should both recognise what history teaches us because they will otherwise continue to live a grim reality.

  3. Crowd sourcing crisis information « Humanitarian Futures Programme  |  January 11th, 2009 at 11:22 PM #

    […] launched by Al Jazeera and takes user-submitted reports, tweets, and Microsoft Virtual Earth to track the number of casualties and other developments.”  In addition to this, the series of website defacements we discussed a few days ago has […]

  4. ArabCrunch On the Most Famous Ultra Geek Site: SlashDot | ArabCrunch  |  January 14th, 2009 at 3:47 AM #

    […] post that was SlashDotted was “Aljazeera Labs Beta Launched Crowdsourced Mapping Mashup For The War On Gaza” Thanks to Aljazeera for innovating the “Mapping the War on Gaza”  which is a helpful tool […]

  5. Wato  |  January 17th, 2009 at 6:15 PM #

    we are assisting live of the crushing of a very small territory where a one and a half million people have been besieged practicaly since the Israelis withdrew from Gaza. But now with F16 in the air, shelling from the sea and from land missiles and tanks most of which have been provided by the war machine of the United states who are in it for money and power (Dick Cheney and the rest of the bunch) just as they were in Irak, the Palestinians have nowhere to flee.How can all these people who are responsable, and it is not Hamas, look themselves in the face in the morning when they look in the mirror

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