Mobile phone displaying Ushahidi website
Mobile phone with Ushahidi crisis mapping site.

We know that we haven’t posted in a long time. And we look forward to changing all that with a streamlined and updated online presence in the New Year. Which, as it happens, will also coincide with an updated offline presence in our new offices in the lovely Badaro neighborhood of Beirut. Please bear with us as we grow.
Meanwhile…
Why we’re really here today is to announce the beginning of Innovations in Mobile Data Collection for Social Change in Iraq and the Middle East, a workshop sponsored by UNICEF Innovation and organized by MobileActive.org. The three-day Amman workshop will bring together more than 80 mobile for change advocates, academics, technologists, and trainers for an intense exploration of how we can improve our use of mobiles for data collection in the Middle East.
Social Media Exchange is excited to have been asked to assist with the facilitation of the workshop. So far, we have compiled a Twitter list of all tweeting participants (functional, but still in-progress) and a one-stop-shop of all workshop links and feeds tagged #mobdata. This portal page, built with Netvibes, was designed to save participants time when documenting their sessions and to provide those who couldn’t be here an easy way to keep up with developments. We’ll be adding and updating it as the week goes on.
Finally, we also want to give a shout-out to the Arab Bloggers meeting that’s running concurrently in Beirut and wish the participants and the organizers a great meeting. The fact that these two gatherings are taking place within such a short distance and at the same time bodes well for a giant leap in the generative use of digital technologies for social change in the Middle East.
Photo by whiteafrican.