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HistoryCommons2.0 - A Revolution is Coming


What is the HistoryCommons?

  • A webapp that enables crowdsourced investigative journalism
  • A platform for collaborating on the documentation of history.
  • An intelligence tool for the people -- A people’s version of the NSA.



What can people do with the HistoryCommons?

  • Generate instant timelines and bibliographies about 1000s of different topics, events, people, corporations, and more.
  • Contribute content and research
  • Collaborate with others to investigate or research a particular issue.
  • Generate instant “context” timelines for any given event or keyword.



What research have HistoryCommons users recently published?

  • In recent months, History Commons users have published new material on the US solar industry, the events and issues surrounding the 9/11 attacks, and civil liberties, focusing on the 2007 US Attorney firings.



What is the current status of HistoryCommons 2.0?

  • It is currently in Alpha. It will go into private beta soon.
  • The new version adds a number of new features, and most importantly makes it much easier for new users to add content and create timelines.



2014 Plan of Attack

  • Finalize a financial model that will make the app self-sustaining and help independent researchers obtain financial backing for their investigative projects.
  • HistoryCommons 2.0 Launch
  • Continued post-launch development of HistoryCommons 2.0
  • Exponential expansion of the HistoryCommons user community



Feature Roadmap

  • Mobile App - Instant access to History Commons timelines and bibliographies.
  • News collector apps and plugins that will automatically feed source material to HistoryCommons investigators.
  • API
  • Social validation of sources, timelines, and individual entries.
  • Social media plugins and integrations so that HistoryCommons content can be easily embedded in other works and shared across multiple platforms.



What are people saying about the HistoryCommons?


"Your timeline has been invaluable to me over the years. I'm certainly aware of -- and flattered by -- your citations from my book." -- Philip Shenon, former New York Times reporter and author of "The Commission"


"For serious research, it's hard to think of a more valuable resource than the timelines assembled by History Commons. The material they provide is a welcome antidote to the misinformation and disinformation that has been coming out of Washington in recent years and they are essential tools in assembling a counternarrative that more honestly addresses the crises we face." -- Craig Unger, author of "House of Bush, House of Saud" and "The Fall of the House of Bush"








[The History Commons is composed] of a handful of freelance, unpaid, amateur sleuths... The researchers are in many ways similar to the team Scott Armstrong, the former Washington Post reporter, recruited in the mid 1980s to uncover the roots of Reagan's secret Iran-Contra deals. The National Security Archive, making extensive use of the the Freedom of Information Act, soon established itself as the lead independent investigatory body, and today stands as a major independent research operation in the nation's capital. -- James Ridgway, Village Voice, "Timeline of Tragedy," 4/13/2004


"[The History Commons'] 9/11 timeline has become the undisputed gold standard of truth research..." -- Mark Jacobson, New York Magazine, "The Ground Zero Grassy Knoll," 3/20/2006


"THE TERROR TIMELINE [by History Commons contirbutor Paul Thompson] is quite subdued in the way it tears the official [9/11] story apart, simply by listing newspaper and other media information snippets, in chronological order. Clearly not all the information is true, since much of it is contradictory. Thompson and the cooperative researchers are to be praised for this." -- Alex Cox, book review, 12/26/2005


The History Commons is "endlessly informative." -- Steve Perry, Minneapolis City Pages, "The Bush Administration's Top 40 Lies about War and Terrorism," 7/30/2003

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