Thursday, July 15, 2010

The Gulf and Me

Interactive Project Spotlights Lives Changed by Oil Spill ; Effort to culminate in customizable book
Source: PRNewswire

ATLANTA, July 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Gulf Coast residents whose lives have been affected by the oil spill can now contribute their stories to an interactive project dedicated to collecting and preserving experiences of everyday people and places affected by the disaster.

"The Gulf and Me: A Storygathering Journey" has two components: a community-driven website where people affected by the spill can upload their stories and images to share with others, and an upcoming journey through the Gulf region by Atlanta-based writer, personal historian and custom book designer Michael Pearson to collect additional stories.

The project will culminate with publication of "The Gulf and Me," a book of stories and photos chronicling the experiences of Gulf Coast residents affected by the spill. Individuals, organizations and communities will have an opportunity to customize the book to feature their own experiences, creating a unique memoir of an unprecedented disaster. Stories posted to the website, including those generated during the storygathering expedition, will remain freely available on the Web indefinitely. A portion of any proceeds will go to Gulf recovery efforts.

"The Deepwater Horizon oil spill has disrupted untold thousands of lives and threatens to change life in the Gulf of Mexico for years to come," Pearson said. "It's important to tell the stories of everyday people affected by what's happened and to preserve those stories. We need to remember years from now that this disaster will have had not just enormous environmental and policy impacts, but significant personal impacts, as well."

An integral part of "The Gulf and Me" is the opportunity for the people closest to the story, Gulf Coast residents, to help direct the expedition by nominating people and places to be profiled, according to Pearson, a former journalist with The Associated Press and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The trip is being designed to be detailed in near-real time on the website, with frequent image and video updates, journal entries and an active Twitter feed. Some interviews and tours may be streamed live, with visitors having an opportunity to participate by asking their own questions.

To view the project, please visit To submit profile nominations, visit "The Assignment Desk" http://

SOURCE The Gulf and Me Project


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