24 Oct 2013
Today at the Abu Dhabi Media Summit, Meedan.org, the San Francisco and Cairo based NGO that has been developing creative social translation software with a focus on Arabic and English translation since 2006, announces the launch of Meedan Labs, a for-profit spin off created to pursue commercial ventures focused on regional and global access to digital real-time content.
Meedan.org has brought more than $10M behind Arabic access to content software with the partnership of foundations including The MacArthur Foundation, The Alwaleed Foundation, the Cisco Foundation, The Coexist Foundation, IBM Foundation, Google.org, and Qatar Foundation Intl, and donor agencies including the Sida, the UK Foreign Office, and the British Research Council, Meedan.org will continue to promote open source technologies (Checkdesk – our award winning investigative liveblogging platform) and open content strategies (Classroom to Classroom – virtual exchange platform for secondary schools).
Meedan Labs is announcing its first product today at the Abu Dhabi Media Summit. Translatedesk (http://translatedesk.net) is a social translation solution for social media, connecting fans with brands to distribute the work of sharing real-time social content to fan communities. This product was informed by our extensive work translating tweets, Facebook posts, and voice messages from Egypt during the early days of the January 25 Revolution.
The ethos of most commercial crowdsourcing applications - from CNN iReport to Viki.com to Mechanical Turk - has been focused on extracting maximum value from the crowd in exchange for minimum pay. Translatedesk is a crowdsourcing tool built for the crowd. Rating, mentoring, correcting, annotating, sharing data, and building community value are all explicitly incentivized in the reputation and payment model in Translatedesk. Translatedesk will release onto the web on November 11th we partner with Taghreedat to translate social media from Saudi Arabia for the National Geographic sponsored Out of Eden Walk (http://outofedenwalk.org) – a seven-year walk around the world begun in the Arab Region by journalist Paul Salopek.
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