Aljazeera Labs Beta Launched Crowdsourced Mapping Mashup For The War On Gaza
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: email@example.com
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.
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.