A Colombian internet collective of citizen journalists has created an online map of their barrio, a working-class area of Medellin.
There was previously no free online map of San Javier La Loma, a barrio in the hills to the west of Medellin.
HiperBarrio, a group which aims to create and share information freely for the good of local communities, mapped their barrio on Open Street Map, a site that aims to bring together geographical information on all areas of the world, Global Voices reported Friday.
Poor areas tend to be severely under-represented on websites such as Google Maps, with little local information available, especially on informal settlements and favelas.
Mikel Maron, of Open Street Maps, says that “Without basic knowledge of the geography and resources of [a community] it is impossible to have an informed discussion on how to improve the lives of residents.”
Open Street Map is “a free editable map of the whole world,” which “allows you to view, edit and use geographical data in a collaborative way from anywhere on Earth.”