This week we have changed gears slightly in my class and have moved from “Secuestro Express” and the kidnappings in Venezuela to “María llena de gracia” and the story of women who act as “mulas” and transport drugs from Colombia to the United States.
With each class and each topic we address, the lines between the good guys and the bad guys are getting fuzzier. And the FARC… they seem to have tentacles everywhere. In Colombia, with the President of Venezuela…and now, the President of Ecuador?
As I am sitting here doing my work, someone in Colombia is watching the news in BogotÃ¡. That someone is sending me (and others in his network) messages called tweets — little messages of no more than 140 characters– through a tool called Twitter.
My Colombian “correspondent” is watching the news, and reporting to me (and others) what he is hearing with regard to the FARC, his government, the recent capture and killing of one of the FARC leaders in Ecuador, and now the possible involvement of government of Ecuador with the FARC.
It is sort of like live blogging, but in micro form and coming at you at a very fast clip. Here is an example of the news torrent…
And yes, you can use twitter with your cell phone as well.
There are several news organizations that have twitter feeds in place (the New York Times, the BBC…) but the idea of citizen journalists has just taken another turn (for the better) with Twitter.
(LLU has its own a twitter ID: langlabunleashd and when we post to the blog the posts are announced via Twitter to anyone who is in our network…)
Oh, and my Colombian correpsondent just sent a link to this little gem via Twitter from YouTube as well… Chavez swearing to God and his sainted mother that he would not be involved with the FARC.
Here is the how El Tiempo de Bogota reported this same news, now 6 hours later than when it was unfolding via Twitter.
Hay muchas caras de la misma moneda, indeed.
Stranger danger? Pffft.