Google Earth and International Social Justice?

Although this is an early media thing, it appears that Google is using its Google Earth tool to highlight atrocities in the Darfur region of Sudan.

I have to reserve judgment here if only to grasp what I think about this.   My initial reaction is to think this is a positive thing — where our governments and the international community appears to be silent on these issues, Google and other large corporations may be able to pick up the slack — if only by highlighting the reality of what is going on.

I hope this embarrasses the heck out of the leaders of Sudan, and starts a call to action in politicians in that region.

This also makes me wonder about what librarians and libraries could do about social justice issues internationally.   Right now I am reading Jeffrey Sach’s The End of Poverty which, to my surprise, is high on action, inspiration and optimism which goes along with the only conclusion one can really make about a good lot of countries in Africa — there is a big problem there;  the problem is our fault;  we have the ability to fix it and we do not.

That said, the sword that swings at Darfur can swing at anyone.     Assuming Page and Brin do not live forever, where does this power end and who will end up with it all in the future.    Is being spied on by the entire Internet any better (or worse) than being spied on by governments?   This will be a hard question to answer in the not-so-far-ahead future.

Again, I still have to reserve judgment, because I am not convinced that I have all the details here.   It is a definite area that I am interested in, though.


My Spin on the Five Blogs Meme. . .

Well, I don’t keep much of a collection of RSS feeds. Basically I use live bookmarks so I can pick and choose the headlines I like. I may go to Google Reader sometime to be more ritualistic and purposive about blog reading, but, well, I don’t want to right now.

That leaves me in a quandry though, because I’m coming in late to this meme and the blogs in my feed have pretty much been linked 5-10 times each already.

I’ve also heard a bit out there about all this five blogs stuff being a little tete-a-clique.

So, while I promise to link to all the favorites throughout my blogging life, I’ve decided to make a list of Five Blogs I’m Going to Add to My Aggregator Because of the Five Blogs Theme.

  1. Jennimi – I really like the template and Jennifer E. Graham has a great writing style. Her two most recent posts were decidedly readable and relevant to boot.
  2. Off the Mark – Meredith mentioned me in the same breath with Mark Lindner, Walt and Karen Schneider. I think I’m ok with that.
  3. LibraryBytes – Yeah, *that* Helene Blowers. Adding her feed is a “no brainer” if it ever was one. This is just an oversight to be honest. I read the blog, I just haven’t ever added it to my live bookmarks.
  4. Libraryola – I have a great interest in the cross-connects between Library and Information Studies and Public Administration. Chris Zammarelli says he’s interested in e-Government, that’s a match!
  5. Open Access News – A great find from Dorothea Salo thankyouverymuch.

And if you are not on this list, it’s probably because 1) you are already in my aggregator 2) I just forgot to add you 3) I haven’t come around to your blog yet OR 4) Somewhere, somehow your content and my eyes haven’t found the right chemistry. Don’t worry, keep blogging. All [Harlequin] romances begin with tension to start anyway. I might come around some time or another.