Tag Archives: crowdsourcing

Help me out with my #ParanoiaTimeline

My last assignment for the Online Journalism  module for this term is going to be a timeline. Well, it’s more than a timeline, because I want to create an interactive graph, that resembles a timeline, with videos, graphs, interviews, the works. But i want to do it in less than two weeks. Are you willing to help me?

The idea is to show the biggest social paranoia events, at a global scale, that happened between the end of the longest paranoia period of the 20th century – the Cold War – in 1990, and the next catastrophic “event” set for 2012 (believe me, some people are terrified over that). I have a list for Pandemics, like SARS, Mad Cow syndrome, swine flu, bird flu; Environmental, like the ozone layer and global warming; Technology includes items like Y2K; and Terrorism, a real situation that keeps our society on borderline paranoia.

As you might have noticed, most of these events were huge on the news, they affected our lives in some way, but most of them never amounted to nothing, or to not as much as the media predicted. I need your help to give depth, and sort the time windows for each one of these events, and if you can interview someone who can talk about this, or tell me about good experts in any of these fields, share information or previous works you made before about any of these subjects, I’d be most grateful, and you’ll all be credited in the assignment. Anyway, if the timeline is not finished by the established deadline, I’ll be working on it for a few more weeks. I’m building a website around this and I really want you to contribute, this is also a crowdsourcing experience.

How can you participate? For now i’m using a Public Google Wave, anyone can join in, but i have a wiki, if you want to use it instead of the Wave just send me a message. I’m thinking about opening a Facebook group, but I’m still thinking about it. I’m open to suggestions. If you know any similar projects just leave the links below in the comment box. Thank you.


The crowd takes over | A multidão assume a responsabilidade


In Birmingham, a group of people is taking citizenship responsibilities a bit further. When the local City Council presented its new website, they weren’t that thrilled about the functionality and the money the city spent with it: 2,8 million pounds. So they decided to re-create it, using the power of crowdsourcing.

Stef Lewandowski started working in a version using the contents of the original website, and along with other brummies, took in his hands the effort to coordinate this project. The process is open to everyone, as i witnessed last Friday at the Moseley Exchange. Programmers, designers, photographers and common users, they all raised questions and provided solutions for a renewed and more practical website, that met the needs of the Birmingham population. You can check what they have done so far at http://bccdiy.com/.

Instead of just collecting and  presenting their criticism and ask for a change, they are developing something out of their own will, in a matter of days. This raises a lot of questions on how citizens relate to public services in areas they can influence  the function of public institutions, in the digital age.

When their version is done, they will offer it to the Birmingham City Council. The question now is will they take it?

This video shows Stef explaining what is BCC DIY and how it all began. I’ll try to post some more videos about this project in the next days. Meanwhile, i’d like to hear what you think of it, and if you know about any similar projects in the place where you live, or if there is a need for one.

Paul Hartley has a thorough account of what happened during that open Friday at Moseley Exchange.

Em Birmingham, um grupo de pessoas está a levar as responsabilidades da cidadania um pouco mais além. Quando a Assembleia Municipal local apresentou o seu novo site, eles não ficaram muito entusiasmados com a funcionalidade ou o custo: 2,8 milhões de libras. Assim, decidiram recriá-lo, usando o poder do crowdsourcing.

Stef Lewandowski começou a trabalhar numa versão usando os conteúdos da página original, e juntamente com outros conterrâneos, tomou a responsabilidade de coordenar este projecto. O processo é aberto a todos, como pude observar Sexta-feira passada no Moseley Exchange. Programadores, designers, fotógrafos e utilizadores comuns, todos levantaram questões e sugeriram soluções para um site renovado e mais prático que fosse de encontro às necessidades da população de Birmingham. Podem ver o que já fizeram em http://bccdiy.com/.

Em vez de apenas reunir críticas e apresentar o seu descontamento e pedir uma mudança, eles estão a desenvolver algo de sua livre vontade, em alguns dias. Isto levanta muitas questões sobre como os cidadãos se relacionam com os serviços públicos em áreas que eles podem ter influência no funcionamento das instituições, na era digital.

Quando a sua versão estiver terminada, este grupo vai oferecê-la ao Birmingham City Council. A questão é se irão aceitá-la.

Neste video Stef Lewandowski explica o que é o BCC DIY e como tudo começou. Eu vou tentar postar mais alguns videos sobre este projecto nos próximos dias. Mas entretanto gostaria de saber o que vocês pensam sobre isto, e se se conhecem projectos semelhantes onde vivem, ou se há necessidade de um.

Paul Hartley tem um relato exaustivo do que se passou nessa Sexta-feira aberta no Moseley Exchange.