November 5, 2010
Virtual street corners
What if there was a way to interact with people in a different neighborhood in your city, one that you seldom visit? Wouldn’t it be interesting to strike up a virtual conversation with someone in your own town, right from a real street corner?
John Ewing, is an artist and social activist who dreamed up the idea, which was launched in June in Boston. Geoff Edgars of the Boston Globe wrote:
The two men were separated by just 2.5 miles, or a few minutes on the No. 66 bus. But that distance can seem insurmountable when one neighborhood is predominantly black and working class and the other is a wealthy, mostly white community. As they chatted about their family histories, Crawford and Cone seemed closer.
It was day one of “Virtual Street Corners,’’ a project meant to link neighborhoods through technology and, more important, people.
I’m so excited about the idea of using technology to better our communities. I am not just speaking about those “in the know” either. It’s when our work actually effects those who are less wired than we are.
This project was an interesting idea. I’m glad words and images it generated are being presented on this website. There’s economic disparity between parts of Greater Boston; that’s a reality we’re unable to make simply vanish. But it’s always good when someone challenges the notion that hefty social and emotional disconnections between local communities and their people are an integral and unavoidable by-product of that. We, in this city, share more than we often realize.
Check out the Virtual Street Corners Facebook page for more information.