Posted by Joshua on Sunday, March 31st, 2013
Syria Video is a web application that maps and aggregates Syrian war videos by tracking a large number of YouTube channels. The channels have been identified as reliable and tied to specific towns or regions of Syria. Syria Video collects all new videos released on these channels and attempts to identify their location in Syria and then displays them in chronological order. Since going online in early January, Syria Video has collected over 40,000 videos from 42 Syrian cities and 10 governates. Syria Video is an automated system, and thus, gathers videos in an unbiased manner.
Syria Video is our first attempt to bring order to the online Syrian war-sphere and has the potential to provide valuable insight to the conflict.
The Syrian government has tried to exploit the fog of war to gain advantage over its opponents by barring foreign journalists, restricting what Syrian journalists can report, and attacking its own citizen journalists.
Opposition activists have struggled to counter this blackout by posting a growing stream of YouTube videos. They are intended to keep the international community abreast of the revolution’s progress, to produce sympathy for their cause, raise money, and advertise their exploits and victories.
The footprint of the Syrian conflict on the web has been tremendous. The daily barrage of videos, tweets and Facebook posts coming out of Syria, has the potential to provide great insight into events occurring in any given area across the country. The lack of clarity that we face in following these events is not so much due to the lack of information, but to the overwhelming amount of it.
*Syria Video is a Syria Comment project and is funded by the Center of Middle Eastern Studies, the Director of which is Joshua Landis. CMES is part of the College of International Studies at the University of Oklahoma.
Inquiries about Syria Video can be directed to info@SyriaVideo.net