Ever wondered how many protests take place around the world? This incredible animated map tracks every known protest since 1979, which adds up to 250 million individual events.
The data is taken from The Global Database of Events, Language, and Tone (GDELT) which tracks international news reports and records protests, violence and changes in military or police posture.
What’s incredible is the increase in activity over time. These are the protests happening in December 1983.
And this is February 2012.
The map is tracking news reports of protests and civil unrest, so they explosion of social media means a lot more activity is being reported today than in the 1980s and 90s. And states where media is censored won’t have every protest flashing up either. Explore the details about the data accuracy and run the animated map in this ForeignPolicy.com article.
But is does seem to show that the world is stepping up and demanding change in a big way.
Our agit8 project celebrates the power of protest song to inspire change, and tracks the music of movements like the Civil Rights Movement, anti-apartheid and our own protest – ending extreme poverty. Watch artists like Bruce Springsteen, Usher, Muse and Green Day perform exclusive protest songs on the agit8 site.
This map raises a lot of questions. Is the world becoming more oppressive and unequal? Are people just more aware of their own power and willing to make a noise about things they disagree with? Or have humans always protested, it’s just our ability to broadcast and document it that has caught up?
Tell us what you think in the comments.