Are you a reporter or journalist looking for a story? Please help to make the QuakeBook a success by writing about this collaborative, international project. For more information please contact Roberto De Vido (Japan) or Dan Ryan (North America).
For all other non-press enquiries please contact Kevin Carroll.
April 1, 2011
TWITTER-SOURCED “#QUAKEBOOK” CREATED IN ONE WEEK
FOR JAPANESE EARTHQUAKE, TSUNAMI RELIEF
Tokyo, Japan — In just over a week, a group of professional and citizen journalists collaborated via Twitter to create a book to raise money for Japanese Red Cross earthquake and tsunami relief efforts. The book will be available for download via Amazon’s Kindle and Sony’s Reader ebook platforms within several days. One hundred percent of revenues will go to the Japanese Red Cross Society.
The 98-page book, titled 2:46: Aftershocks: Stories from the Japan Earthquake and known on Twitter as “#quakebook”, is the brainchild of a Briton who lives in the Tokyo area and blogs under the pseudonym “Our Man in Abiko”.
The day after the earthquake and tsunami, Our Man in Abiko wrote on his blog, ”Is there anything you can do? Right now, I'm not sure. But I'll think of something.”
A few days later, he did think of something. The former journalist put out a call on his blog and via Twitter for art, essays and photographs that reflected first-person accounts of the disaster. He decided he would edit them into a book and donate all the revenues to the Japanese Red Cross Society. Within 15 hours, he had received 74 eyewitness submissions from all over Japan, as well as reactions from elsewhere in Asia, Europe and North America.
In addition to narratives by journalists and people who braved the disaster, 2:46: Aftershocks: Stories from the Japan Earthquake contains writing created specifically for the book by authors William Gibson, Jake Adelstein, and Barry Eisler, as well as a piece by artist and musician Yoko Ono.
“The primary goal,” Our Man in Abiko says, “is to raise awareness, and in doing so raise money for the Japanese Red Cross Society to help the thousands of homeless, hungry and cold survivors of the earthquake and tsunami. The biggest frustration for many of us was being unable to help these victims. I don’t have any medical skills, and I’m not a helicopter pilot, but I can edit. I’m doing what I can do.”
With the book completed, the project team turned again to social media. In a matter of days, they created a website http://www.quakebook.org, Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/Quakebook and Twitter account (@quakebook). The project quickly got attention from Twitter users like Yoko Ono as well as tech, publishing, and Japan-centric blogs.
“Twitter has been an amazing collaboration tool,” says Our Man in Abiko. “A few tweets pulled together nearly everything – all the participants, all the expertise – and in just over a week we had created a book including stories from an 80-year-old grandfather in Sendai, a couple in Canada waiting to hear if their relatives were okay, and a Japanese family who left their home, telling their young son they might never be able to return.
Soon we were working with the world’s biggest ebook distributors and fielding calls from newspapers and television stations on five continents. People around the world are responding to the message of #quakebook [and] I really feel we are on the brink of something amazing.”
For further details, please contact Roberto De Vido (Japan) or Dan Ryan (North America) at the email links shown above.
Selection of global Media Coverage to date:
(If you find #QuakeBook media coverage, please do let us know. Thanks).
April 3rd - April 5th
Fukushima: The future is unknown but the present is terrible enough.
La catastrophe japonaise suscite l'innovation sur les réseaux sociaux
Twitter schreibt Geschichte(n): Buch zum Japan-Beben in sieben Tagen
March 30th - April 2nd
BBC - Quakebook - a triumph of good will and social media
(many thanks to @ruskin147)
CNNGo - Japan earthquake aid book crowd-sourced in just seven days
MajiroxNews - 2:46 Quakebook
CNN iReport by @shoototkyo
Quite extraordinary. Yoko Ono has tweeted about Quakebook
You can't get better than this! Twitter has tweeted about Quakebook. Without Twitter, it would have been far harder to bring together this type of collaborative book project.
Good and bad in Japan - Quakebook - Quakebook is good!
A piece by Jared Keller at The Atlantic. Buzz in the blogsphere for Quakebook is getting off to a very prestigious start.