How the #theafghanistanyouneversee hashtag proves the worth of crowdsourcing

https://twitter.com/#!/VixxyLix/status/199535356838809600

It started as a hashtag attached to several photos by a journalist. By the weekend, it had become a huge sharing of images from people who had been to Afghanistan, and showed us another side to a country rarely away from the headlines.

The idea behind #theAfghanistanYouNeverSee came from journalist Antony Loveless, who specialises in defence for the London Press Service. The first hashtag appeared late last week, and by the bank holiday weekend had become a steady flow of images:

There was plenty of support quickly:

and

When challenged on a motive behind it, Antony replied:

I created a Storify compiling some of the images which have been posted on Twitter under the hasthag #theafghanistanyouneversee. Sadly, Storify’s ‘publish to WordPress’ button doesn’t seem to be working at the moment, so you’ll have to click on the link here.

To me, put simply, it sums up everything that’s changed about storytelling. A collection of pictures, from people who’ve been there, show a side to a country which as been rarely out of the news.

It’s fascinating – and an example to all journalists of why we shouldn’t fear opening up our industry. If we’re not connected, we’re not really telling the story, are we?

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