Inauguration Day: Obama 2.0

Image by DonkeyHotey

Mainstream media cameras will be directed solely at the Capitol, the Mall and the Inaugural Parade route today–sites of carefully coordinated pomp and circumstance.

But there will be much more going on in Washington, DC on Inauguration Day besides tributes to power. And the citizen journalists of DC Media Group will be on the ground providing alternative coverage all day long.

Our website brings together real-time updates from all correspondents–livestreams, Twitter feeds, blog posts and more–at dcmediagroup.info.

There will also be continuous updates on the Facebook page and @DCMediaGroup. Ustream is featuring DC Media Group livestreamers on their front page under the heading “Citizen Reporting the Inauguration.”

DC Media Group: Journalists working for you

Members of the DC Media Group contemplating American media
Members of DC Media Group contemplating the distraction of American media

If you’re interested in the events surrounding the 2013 Inauguration but don’t want to tune into Mainstream Media repetition of soundbites and paeans to pageantry, there’s an alternative for you. DC Media Group, a collective of independent online media sources, will be covering events and dissents of the 2013 Inaugural from a grassroots perspective–on the ground in real time, livestreaming, blogging, photographing, tweeting and more.

Cool Revolution is honored and inspired to be collaborating with these talented and dogged citizen journalists. I’ll be working alongside @GenKnoxx, @Rousseau_ist, @Sikk412, @johnzangas, @OCCUPYCARLISLE and @organizerx. We’ll be contributing to and supported by outlets already producing incredible work–Other Possibilities Network, We Act Radio, and DC Mic Check.

Special thanks to @OPNinfo for setting up our website DCMediaGroup.info, the hub for all livestream feeds, Twitter streams and much more (including updates to Cool Revolution).

You can also find a calendar of events, photos and regular updates on the Facebook page.

And you can look forward to more alternative news coverage and creative, thoughtful journalism from DC Media Group following the Inauguration!

Update: Livestreaming host Ustream highlights the livestreamers of DC Media Group on their Inauguration Central page!

Citizen streamers will hit the ground in Washington, D.C. to document the Inauguration as they see it. Raw, unfilterd and real. Expect rallies and protests, scenes of massive crowds and of course, the unexpected.

Social media revolutionaries in the Mideast

Social media is the sine qua non of Occupy in Western countries. And it’s also being used throughout the world in oppressed societies, most notably during the Arab Spring of 2011. Then and today, just what is the impact of the new Internet technologies in Mideast revolts?

Social Capital Blog gives us some background:

The “Arab Spring” in Tunisia, Egypt and elsewhere in the Mid-East heavily relied on the Internet, social media and technologies like Twitter, TwitPic, Facebook and YouTube in the early stages to accelerate social protest. There are even allegations that the CIA was blindsided about the Egypt uprising by failing to follow developments on Twitter.

There is less evidence that social media played a strong a role in places like Yemen (where Internet penetration is low) or Libya (where the government controlled Internet means of distribution and cracked down more effectively).

In Syria, where the “Arab Fall” is still underway and the fighting has intensified and spread to Damascus’ suburbs, the role of social media has also been more limited, out of fear that the government is monitoring online behavior and because the government learned from Egypt and Tunisia and cracked down heavily on social media.

This hasn’t prevented the Syrian opposition’s facility with new media:

The protest movement has also been adept at using social media – Facebook hosts pages like Syria Monitor, Syrian Letters, and Twitter Users for Syria help spread information and firsthand testimony. The twitter hashtags #Syria and #Assad also serve as clearinghouses, linking to Facebook pages and blogs like the Revolting Syrian.

In an interview with We Act Radio in Washington, DC, AJ Kurabi said that so many educated kids are using Twitter and Facebook, but he noted its limitations. With technologies like livestream the atrocities of Bashar al-Assad are exposed,”but he keeps on getting away with it,” he said.

Blogging has been another outlet for individuals in repressive countries, often providing textured viewpoints unavailable by other means. Chapati Mystery is a blog by Dr. Manan Ahmed in Pakistan:

I believe that there is an ethical way in which we have to engage with the world we live in, and as ethics includes a commitment to seeking truth and explanation of various fundamental issues, we have to fulfill that responsibility whether I was a grad student, whether I had a tenure or not, that would not stop me from being an ethical citizen.

Read It Later

I think I’m in love. With an app.

I’m a compulsive clicker. On the Net every day there are a thousand articles to read and videos to watch and cool stuff to keep up with. Half the time I say, “I’ll read it later.”

Some clever app developer knows my type. He or she made “Read It Later.” I’ve already downloaded it on my Mac, iPad and Android phone, and it’s uncluttered the I-won’t-confess-how-many tabs I had open in my browser. Let’s hope it works as well as advertised, because it just looks perfect for my Internet hoarding habits.

You can use it on your web browser, iPhone, iPad, Android, Kindle Fire, or Blackberry. You can save content to your queue from your browser or from over 250 apps. Here’s the really fun part: in Click to Save mode, you can zip through your news aggregator, RSS reader, or Twitter timeline, adding links to your queue without actually clicking through and loading it. Your devices will sync up, and you can even download pages to read when you’re offline.

So far, so good. If you’re using it, please share your experience.