IT and history -- forming video archives before things are d

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IT and history -- forming video archives before things are d

Postby TheVat on January 8th, 2021, 5:55 pm 

From today's Washington Post...

The Capitol mob recorded its own history. Now, volunteers are trying to preserve the record.

Philip Bump
Jan. 7, 2021 at 4:05 p.m. MST

The revolution wasn’t just televised, it was live-streamed.

It was photographed from every conceivable angle; it was documented in detail by the rioters themselves: the mob of President Trump’s supporters who stormed into the Capitol on Wednesday. As they clambered up scaffolding and hopped through broken windows, they stopped to take selfies or photograph their friends giddily rampaging through the legislative seat of the United States. We know how the surge began not because of security footage or interviews with law enforcement but because the people who were rushing the Capitol filmed each other doing it.

There are a lot of ways in which the omnipresence of recording devices has reshaped our culture. The emergence of police brutality as a political issue derives largely from the ability of bystanders to capture footage showing the frequency with which Black Americans were abused by law enforcement. The emphasis on social media attention has turned millions of Americans into micro-celebrities and celebrity-wannabes, documenting their own lives for the rush of receiving the approval of others.

For most people, though, taking a selfie and sharing it on Instagram still seems private and innocuous. They don’t have many followers, so it seems like the functional equivalent of passing a photo around at work. It’s anonymous, in its own way, even though anyone in the world can see it. That’s a tricky combination: posting footage that can be seen anywhere with the expectation that it won’t be. It becomes particularly fraught when that footage is documenting criminal activity at a historic scale.

Some portion of the crowd at the Capitol on Wednesday was probably unaware of that scale.

“The people I managed to speak to didn’t seem to understand the gravity of what they had done,” wrote Slate’s Aymann Ismail, who was on the scene. There was apparently a glee to the rampage, a mix for many of surprise and excitement that blurred any sense that perhaps climbing through broken windows into a heavily protected federal building might be crossing some sort of line.

Others were certainly aware of what they were doing. While some of those on Capitol Hill were like the picnickers who headed to Manassas to watch the first Battle of Bull Run, others were there to emulate the Confederates. There was a real threat alongside the organically emerging one.

And all of it was captured in photos, videos and streams that quickly made their way to the Internet.

The world is now in its fourth information revolution. The first preceded the written word. The second preceded the emergence of the Internet. The third: the ability to share information through the Web. And this current revolution, in which there’s too much to parse, when we record and document ourselves so much that we can’t actually capture it all. We record things and those things get lost because they aren’t worth keeping, not because we can’t.

That poses a problem in the moment. Think of it like a curve: an enormous amount of documentation of what happened at the Capitol existed at the moment it was happening. Much of that quickly made its way online. As hours pass, more and more of it will vanish, in part because the people documenting what they saw will begin to realize that it might not be useful to have publicly recorded themselves violating federal law. That Instagram post that got 20 likes from 100 followers is suddenly something the FBI might find useful. It’s also something that employers might not appreciate. Facebook itself announced it would begin removing videos and photos from Wednesday out of concern that they promote criminal activity.

Once that video or photo is removed, so is the piece of history that is documented. So, amateur archivists have already sprung into action to capture and store the scenes that unfolded during the Capitol takeover.

One group collecting those records is Bellingcat. The group of independent investigators already has a robust track record of using publicly available evidence to piece together historic events. They were instrumental in uncovering Russia’s role in shooting down Malaysian Air Flight 17 over Ukraine in 2014 and, last year, helped determine that Iranian antiaircraft fire brought down a plane in that country. Shortly after the Capitol was secured on Wednesday, Bellingcat announced that it was asking volunteers to contribute videos and photos documenting what had occurred.... ... ve-record/
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Re: IT and history -- forming video archives before things a

Postby charon on January 8th, 2021, 7:53 pm 

I call it evidence... :-)
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Re: IT and history -- forming video archives before things a

Postby Dave_Oblad on January 8th, 2021, 10:12 pm 

Also video now showing the security guys being complicit in the riot. For example: removing the barricades and stepping back to allow the rioters access to the steps. Also showing them posing for selfies with rioters. Obviously, many of the security guys were Trump supporters. That's also why so few arrests were made at the time. The rioters, in many cases, were treated like children that had wandered away from the tour. Doesn't the constitution have any provisions for handling a treasonous insurrection and holding all supporters (including members of congress) responsible? Hope someone gets massive pressure to expose everything that's demonstrably true and show that justice is real for liars and supporters.

So, how is everyone else? (LOL)
Be good and safe.
Dave :^)
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