A collection of photographs by Teru Kuwayama, Balazs Gardi and Tivadar Domaniczky, taken while embedded with 1st Battalion, 8th Marines in Afghanistan, was on view at Juilliard at Lincoln Center’s Willson Theater, NYC, in the exhibition/performance, “We Write This To You From The Distant Future”, March 26 & 27, 2011.
Basetrack: One-Eight is an experimental media project, funded by a 2010 Knight News Challenge Grant awarded to photojournalist Teru Kuwayama. He organized a team of independent photographers and journalists to use an online journal – basetrack.org, to chronicle the events of the 1st Battalion, 8th Marines in Afghanistan, by connecting the personnel, their families and other stakeholders and share information through their online social network.
A small team of mobile media operators, organized by Kuwayama, embedded with the battalion, transmitted their reports and reflections from Helmand province as they traveled across the battalion’s area of operations between August and January 2011. They broadcast to the United States and beyond “using social media, with the hope that it can bring the war back to the American public in the way that television did during the Vietnam years…. I am personally of the opinion that the American public should be much more aware of what its military is doing and be more engaged with the military and should be listening to the military.” …Teru Kuwayama
Basetrack’s team was supported by a network of technologists, analysts, artists, and journalists, working around the clock, from around the world, to connect over a thousand Marines and Corpsmen to their families, and to connect a broader public to the longest war in US history.
Basetrack @Sadika quoted Brigadier Ed Davis, “If we are going to succeed in Afghanistan, we need to focus on the cause of the insurgency – which is the intimidated, vulnerable, disenfranchised people – and not the symptom, which is the insurgent fighter.”
Basetrack is a non-profit initiative, operated by November Eleven, a US-based, 501(c)3 public charity. Basetrack takes an open-source approach to journalism, making its original content freely available for non-commercial use under Creative Commons licensing protocols, and employing open, ubiquitous social media platforms to distribute its reporting, and to engage public participation in the reporting process. A free, downloadable, WordPress-based “Basetrack system” will be made available to the public for use in future media projects._________________________________________________________________________________ The Lessons of Basetrack: A Conversation with Teru Kuwayama Knight Garage, March 21, 2011
By Pam Maples Covering Marines at War, Through Facebook New York Times, December 21, 2010
By Michael Kamber