Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Burning to be part of the action

In 2003 San Diego was caught on camera showing a different face to the Pacific Coast’s sunny beach town we tend to associate with Southern California. A massive wild fire burned over 300,000 acres and 1,500 homes when the city became ablaze; becoming the second worst fire in California’s history.

The interesting thing about this incident was that many pictures of the fire were taken by the locals being affected. Instead of the local newspaper sending a few reporters out to the site to cover the story, we got the information from the very people being driven
from their homes.

“Sign On San Diego,” an online discussion forum as part of the San Diego Tribune’s website, was host to a message board and photo sharing by local citizens to show the fire from their perspectives. The local news became a conversation between the victims living in the area as they shared their pictures and personal accounts with each other and the rest of the world.

Crowd sourcing” is the latest way in which to

obtain news, where the crowd is doing the work. When the technology of digital cameras, cell phones with cameras, and websites offering message boards and blogs is accessible to most people, it seems that allowing the public to participate is a more effective way to gather and share information.

Let’s hope this continues to spread like a wild fire.


ChristinaK said...

very cool eye-catching pics. were these pictures taken by people in the community? it looks like a professional did them.

ChristinaK said...