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Occupy Wall Street's Situational Awareness

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, November 17 2011

Occupy Wall Street's tech team has produced this, a scalable Ushahidi map that now hosts reports on the ground from the protesters' ongoing actions in and around Wall Street. It aggregates emailed reports, web-submitted ones and tweets that note a location and have the hashtag #occupymap.

Occupiers will use it today to monitor the goings-on in lower Manhattan and around the city as they are already two hours into a day of action, amassing at the foot of the New York Stock Exchange and throughout New York's financial district in a massive, un-permitted protest.

Mostly, the map now contains tweets from Mother Jones' Josh Harkinson, who is in the ground with the protesters and reporting on the march minute-by-minute as protesters delay the opening New York Stock Exchange's opening bell. The Guardian's Adam Gabbatt is also there, as is freelancer Melissa Gira Grant and a score of others.

A new occupiers' wiki lists other upcoming tools, including an email tool and a CRM system to collect and sort email addresses and send mass emails.

From that wiki, the occupiers' Internet Working Group outlines a number of other projects they're working on:

In addition to the work described here, members of the Working Groups are working on projects that address needs of the #OWS community. This includes:

  • The PermaBank. This project will create a 'people's Craigslist' that facilitates offers of volunteer help, services and equipment, alongside requests for these items. At the core of this is the creation of categories and tagging functions that allow for individual occupations to use the raw data as they see fit.
  • will be a site that includes a map of all occupations with contact info. It may host other functions as well.
  • Operating the OWS Outreach CRM, specifically CiviCRM, for managing listservs and one-way email communication to large lists.
  • Mobile platforms
  • Meeting the need for electricity to operate our computers and mobile phones
  • PBX software for teleconferencing
  • Distributed decision-making software, like Open Assembly
  •, a river for #OWS