Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Queensland Residents Post Flood Footage

This post is cross-posted from YouTube Trends and was originally written by Kevin Allocca.

Major flooding in Queensland, Australia recently has now led to large evacuations and over a billion dollars in likely damages. We've collected some of the footage posted in the last few days of the flooding from residents in cities like Dalby, Bundaberg, and Chinchilla. You can view them here:

(Use the arrows to navigate between videos or watch them all here)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Happy Holidays from the PM and President of Israel

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Presiden Shimon Peres took to YouTube to wish Happy Holidays to all.

We at CitizenTube wish you a Happy Holidays as well!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Veterans for Peace - Civil Disobedience to End War

War veterans chained themselves to the front gates of the White House to display their disapproval of the President's support of war in Afghanistan. Whether you ultimately agree with their argument or not, their backgrounds and convictions deserve everyone's consideration:

Monday, December 20, 2010

A year later, and Russia's "YouTube Cops" meet sad fates

There's an important post by Alexey Sidorenko over on Global Voices following up on the story of the Russian police officers who took to YouTube a year ago to tell the world of the corruption they'd observed within the force.

It all started with Alexey Dymovskiy, who posted two lengthy videos to YouTube last November pointing out the corruption in the Russian police force, going so far as to call his superiors "ignorant, reckless, boorish and dim-witted." A half a million views later, Dymovskiy's videos were getting played all over the international media, and several other Russian officers followed his footsteps onto YouTube. However, as Sidorenko reports, most of those who published videos have been fired, jailed, and/or beaten.

Writes Sidorenko:

It's not that corruption in the Russian police was unknown before Dymovskiy's video. It was the medium he chose for telling this open secret that attracted so much attention. The full disclosure of the identity of the messenger was an essential part of the message, and it introduced a new form of citizen-to-government public communication: an online video address to the president or prime minister.

Read more here.

Here's one of Dymovskiy's original videos:

Friday, December 17, 2010

Managing Director of the IMF on the Economic Recovery

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, spoke to Reuters' Chrystia Freeland this past week about the economic recovery in Europe. The conversation ranged from whether the economic recovery is uneven in Europe to his thoughts on running for the French presidency to the importance of the United States in the global economic system.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Data visualizations + holograms = Awesome

Here at Citizentube we've developed a bit of a friend-crush on data visualizations. Using data to tell interesting stories is something our friends on the Google Zeitgeist team did effectively and is something we're currently working on with our newly launched YouTube Trends (more to come on that later).

In the video below Professor of Global Health (and TED favorite) Hans Rosling uses data to show trends over time in health and wealth across the world. While you may have seen graphs and charts about this issue before, promise you've never seen it presented like this:

Friday, December 10, 2010

Inside London's Student Protests

Students in the United Kingdom protested -- sometimes violently -- in London yesterday into the evening over a hike in the maximum tuition fee resulting in 12 officers and 43 protesters injured, according to the BBC. Many of the students and bystanders were carrying cameras and capture different perspectives on the day's events. We've collected an assortment of them in the playlist below and more have been continuously uploaded throughout the day.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Your Ticket to Davos

Do you have the ultimate idea about how to close the poverty gap? Here’s your chance to tell the world. For the fourth year, through the Davos Debates program, one lucky YouTube user will get an all-access pass to the World Economic Forum in Davos, where global leaders gather to tackle the most important issues facing our world.

To enter the running, all you have to do is submit your 1-minute video summarizing your ideas on the importance of inclusive growth - a key theme of this year’s event. Not sure what inclusive growth really means? Past Davos Debates winners break it down for you here:

The winner with the best video will be selected as an informal YouTube community representative to participate in the Annual Meeting and take part in a special panel during the event. You’ll not only have the opportunity to rub elbows with the most powerful leaders in the world, you’ll be given a platform to share your views with them.

The deadline to submit your ideas is January 14, so visit the Davos channel today to make your voice heard.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Ask the Department of the Interior

Ever been interested in what the Department of the Interior does? Now is your time to ask!

The Director of New Media for the Department of the Interior is asking you to submit your questions and Secretary Ken Salazar will answer them on YouTube at the end of next week.

You can submit questions right in the comments to the linked YouTube video as well as on the other social media channels listed at the end of the video!

"Your World, Your Future: Voices of a New Generation"

The US Mission to the UN just launched an innovative interactive series entitled "Your World, Your Future: Voices of a New Generation" in which they're inviting young people around the world to lead the political dialogue. From December 2nd until the 14th the US Mission to the UN is welcoming anyone under the age of 21 to submit an answer to the following question either in writing (less than 250 words) or via YouTube (1 minute or less):

“What is the most vital challenge to international peace and security facing your generation? Tell the UN Security Council what issue you believe deserves more attention, and explain why it is important.”

Please view the launch video here.

The US Mission will select the three most compelling submissions and pose them as topics for debate amongst the UN Security Council at an event on December 21st. This event, hosted at the UN Headquarters in New York, will also be live streamed at

Full details can be found here.

Submit your answer today!

Friday, December 3, 2010

How the TSA videos went viral

The Transportation and Security Administration has been a hot topic in the past month, and today a top trending video is footage captured at an Oklahoma City airport of wheel-chair bound Tammy Banovac who stripped to her underwear to avoid a search. That clip, which you can view directly below, has been viewed over a million times in the past day.

Over the past month there are a handful of TSA related videos that have "gone viral".

The holiday season is still young, and we're still a few weeks off from the next surge in domestic air travel, but the height of TSA hysteria might be behind us for now. Looking at data for users searching "TSA" on YouTube, you can see on the graph below that search interest peaked on the 22nd, the busiest travel day of the year and the day that two of the most-viewed videos received the most media attention.

Searches first began to pick up after John Tyner posted the video above of his experience at the San Diego Airport.

Two other interesting asides about the search data:
1. The largest spiking search term associated with "TSA" in the past 30 days was "pat down."
2. The state "TSA" searches were most popular in? Utah. (The video of the young boy being searched was captured in Salt Lake City.)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Learn about the human side of climate change from Kofi Annan

There's an excellent post on the official Google blog in which Kofi Annan, former Secretary-General of the UN, uses Google Earth technology to demonstrate the human effects of climate change:

Climate change is too often misunderstood to be simply an environmental issue, rather than a human issue. For our children and grandchildren, climate change is an issue of public health, economics, global security and social equity. This human side of climate change is explained in a new Google Earth tour narrated by former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan. Within these stories, you’ll find data and tools to explore this topic in more depth, and meet some of the people who are actively working on managing the risks of climate variability and change. We encourage you to take the tour to learn more about these human issues and the inspiring work of groups like the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa (AGRA) that are helping farmers cope with climate change. We hope this video will serve as a useful tool as educators help students around the world understand the complexity of this issue.

To continue reading visit here or watch the video below.

Sarah Shourd, American released from Iran, writes music video for remaining imprisoned hikers

We've been following the story of the three American hikers detained in Iran for over a year now, as their friends and family have used video to raise awareness for their captivity. When one of the hikers, Sarah Shourd, was released a few months ago, members of posed a question to President Clinton in our YouTube interview about what needs to happen to release her two fellow hikers, Josh Fattal and Shane Bauer. Now Sarah has produced a music video, with lyrics she wrote in prison, to raise awareness for their captivity. You can buy the song directly from Amazon, the proceeds will go to funding the advocacy work of

And here's more background on Sarah, Shane, and Josh's story: