I must off to studio and work with a dwarf (very sweet – and he has to wash in a bidet) and your fellow countrymen Mark Hamill and Tennyson (that can’t be right) Ford
January 10, 2013 § Leave a comment
The @dronestream project, conceived as part of NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program, is a follow-up to Begley’s Drone+, an iPhone app mapping every drone strike in real-time that was banned by Apple, and draws constant, methodical attention to a hush-hush reality. Wondering just what Begley was hoping to accomplish with what’s now become an extended part-time job, we e-mailed him a few questions.
Why tweet all the reported drone strikes if they’ve already been reported? Where did this idea originate?
The idea came from a conversation with [NYU professor and media theorist] Douglas Rushkoff. In his class, Narrative Lab, we talk a lot about narrativity and the way stories are told on the web. It also came from a love of how Teju Cole uses Twitter; his “small fates” project is so beautiful and devastating at the same time.
When I started reading all the reports of drone strikes in Yemen, Pakistan, and Somalia, one thing stood out: the flatness of language. There are words like “militant” and “compound” and “hideout,” which come to mean very little when you read them in such volume. I sincerely didn’t know what the contours of our drone war looked like. So I wanted to dig into the data set about every reported U.S. drone attack and try to surface that information in a new way. (Dronestagram has been a big inspiration in this regard.)
Dronestream turned into more of a journalistic feed, of course — and you’re right to say that the strikes have already been reported. I’m just pulling them from the Bureau of Investigative Journalism and inserting them into a different medium. read more