The One-Eight Basetrack Project

Mission Statement

This is an experimental media project, tracking the deployment of 1/8 – 1st Battalion, Eighth Marines, throughout the duration of their deployment to southern Afghanistan. A small team of mobile media operators is embedded with the battalion, transmitting their reports and reflections from Helmand province as they travel across the battalion’s area of operations. Basetrack’s forward team is supported by a network of technologists, analysts, artists, and journalists, working around the clock, from around the world, to connect over a thousand Marines and Corpsmen to their families, and to connect a broader public to the longest war in US history. Basetrack is a non-profit initiative, operated by November Eleven, a US-based, 501(c)3 public charity. Basetrack takes an open-source approach to journalism, making its original content freely available for non-commercial use under Creative Commons licensing protocols, and employing open, ubiquitous social media platforms to distribute its reporting, and to engage public participation in the reporting process.

-The Basetrack Project Team-

David Gurman is the designer and technical lead for the Basetrack online presence. David is a San Francisco-based designer and artist who makes memorials that use live data feeds to connect viewers in “safe zones” to conflict areas. He received his M.F.A. from California College for the Arts  in 2007. He was also a 2007 Headlands Center for the Arts’ Artist in Residence. Gurman received a 2010 Center for Cultural Innovation, Investing in Artists Grant and was also awarded a Toby Devan Lewis Fellowship.  He is a 2011 Eureka Fellow. His work has been included in national and international exhibitions. Currently, Gurman and Brainvise are working on an installation that draws real time earthquake data from conflict zones and uses the ground motion to signal events as they occur. He will debut the project at the Luggage Store Gallery in San Francisco, California. Gurman is currently a 2010 TED Global Fellow.

David Gurman

Teru Kuwayama

Teru is from New York City and received a B.A. from the State University of New York at Albany.  In 1998, he began working as a contributing photographer for Life magazine, and then for publications including Time, Newsweek, and National Geographic.  Since 2001, his work has focused on conflict and the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Kashmir.  In 2007, he launched Battlespace, a traveling group exhibition of photographs from Iraq and Afghanistan. His work is featured in Esquire’s “The Best and Brightest” of 2004 and has earned awards including, a 2009 Dorothea Lange-Paul Taylor Prize, a 2002 New York Foundation for the Arts Award and many others.

Balazs is a Hungarian independent photographer who studied journalism and photography in Budapest and at the University of Wales, Cardiff. Focused on capturing stories about marginalized communities in desperate situations, he has traveled regularly to Afghanistan and Pakistan.  Gardi’s work has been honored with the Prix Bayeux War Correspondents Award, the PX3 Photographer of the Year Award, three first-prize World Press Photo awards, a PDN Photography Prize among others.  Gardi is currently working on a long-term project, Facing Water Crisis, which documents how today’s global water crisis clashes with the daily lives of individuals.

Balazs Gardi

Tivadar Domaniczky

Tivadar is a freelance photojournalist from Budapest, Hungary. After studying science and the arts, his attention was driven to current affairs. For five years, he worked for Hungary’s most influential political daily, Nepszabadsag. In 2007, he started to follow how worldwide events have shaped the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. He has extensively documented Israeli military operations against the Gaza Strip, including Israel’s 22-day Cast Lead offensive. Domaniczky is a member of the VII Network of photographers

Sundev (BRAINVISE) is the lead developer for the Basetrack web platform. With a 10 year history in data visualization and unique interactivity, he has recently turned his attention to creating websites used by communities in order to share geo-located data. By using the expanding range of web-enabled devices, mapping software like Google Maps, and his own drawing tools, Lohr creates spaces for individuals to easily share location-dependent information in a Wiki-style format.

Sundev Lohr

Joshua Levy

Joshua is a San Francisco-based artist, photographer, writer and technologist. He received his undergraduate degree from Boston University and post graduate degree from The Los Angeles Film School. After years of designing and driving marketing strategies for top retail brands, he turned his sights on redefining gaming and social media as a vehicle to raise awareness for social causes. In 2010 Joshua founded a gaming company focused on enabling acts of philanthropy, the first of which is a mission-based game sponsored by the Smithsonian American Art Museum.

Monica is a New York-based freelance journalist. Raised in California, she studied journalism at San Jose State University and holds an M.A. in Latin American Studies from New York University. For six years, she reported from Latin America on immigration, politics, and drug violence, contributing regularly to The Christian Science Monitor, The Chronicle of Higher Education, the San Francisco Chronicle and Newsweek, and was the Mexico representative for the Committee to Protect Journalists.

Monica Campbell

Rita Leistner

Rita is a photographer and writer from Toronto Canada. She studied photojournalism at The International Center of Photography in New York and earned a Master of Arts in comparative literature from the University of Toronto, where she now teaches a course called “The Art and Purpose of Photojournalism.” Rita has won twelve Canadian National Magazine Awards. Rita walked to Iraq from Turkey in 2003. She spent four months embedded with the U.S. Cavalry and also co-authored the book Unembedded: Four Independent Photojournalists on the War in Iraq. Rita’s current work-in-progress is a series of diptychs of portraits and landscapes, Portraitscapes of War—a study of inhabitancy and identity in lands under conflict.

Matt was a Soldier in the US Army from 2005 to 2010. After infantry and airborne training at Fort Benning, Georgia, he was assigned to the 10th Mountain Division’s 2nd Battalion, 87th Infantry, and deployed to Afghanistan for 16 months, earning the Combat Infantryman’s Badge. Before enlisting, he studied government and history at the University of Virginia as an Echols Scholar and graduated from the United World College of the American West as Davis Scholar. Farwell’s writings about his Afghanistan deployment have been featured in “Generation What? Dispatches from the Quarterlife Crisis” and “The Fourth Genre: Contemporary Writers of/on Creative Nonfiction.” He currently divides his time between Virginia and Arkansas.

Matt Farwell

Images captured by the Basetrack Project during their embed with Marines in Afghanistan

All Images Used with Expressed Permission from The Basetrack Project
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