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WWL: Beyond 311
Where We Live - with John Dankosky
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New Haven techies turn residents into citizens


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49:00 minutes (23.53 MB)
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That pesky pothole! That dangerous intersection! The graffiti under the bridge!  See something in your neighborhood that isn't right?  Now, communicating with a municipal public works department can be as simple as one, two, three. See a problem, map it, and track it until it's resolved. Coming up, where we live, a discussion with the creators of SeeClickFix---the web tool started right here in Connecticut, that's changing how residents take ownership of their communities. It's civic pride—in cyber space!!

This program originally aired on August 28, 2009.

SeeClickFix launched a new website on Monday, October 5th.   The new site features easy to use city and neighborhood homepages. Check it out.

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Ben Berkowitz - Abuse of power?


Can someone please call in and ask Ben Berkowitz what his PROBLEM is?  He will target 'graffiti' and talk about it all day and HARASS local residents (who are actually native to new haven),  but when someone reports graffiti that Ben actually likes, he will say... ''no no, I think that's art.  We'll leave it.''  Who made him the authoirity???  He blows his role out of proportion, gets drunk on the green and starts arguements with locals, targets and accuses local taxpaying workers for being graffiti writers, and wastes peoples time and money with this website.

Hey Ben!  Graffiti is part of EVERY city, small/large/ USA or international...  you need to understand that, and if you don't like it, perhaps you should move.  The rest of us would rather see our tax money go to education, keeping homeless people fed or getting mental help they need or fixing up roads.  The graffiti in New Haven is small time and will work its self out as these kids grow up. 

Maybe if you used a percentage of the money you use to clean the city (or harrass these kids), to create a legal wall in 2 or 3 locations around the city, you  would give these kids an outlet, and believe it or not, many of them ARE artists, and you would help the city begine to flourish with a creative enlightenment.


Great show

Hi John,

Great show topic. I've been a fan of SeeClickFix from the moment I heard about it on the New Haven Independent's site.

Here at the Journal Inquirer we've just partnered with SeeClickFix in the last week or so. They created a new widget that brings SeeClickFix onto our homepage (http://www.journalinquirer.com) in one of the tabs at the top of our site. While we do require people to subscribe to read the full versions of all the stories our reporters produce, that's not the case with our site's "window" on SeeClickFix.

We introduced the new feature to our readers with a column on page one of our print edition last Monday and will be offering updates on the problems in our communities weekly, as well as updates on the good things that people are doing to improve their neighborhoods.

So far it's a hit and we've had a lot of good dialogue on the site already. That's likely because the role of the local newspaper is a natural fit for SeeClickFix. As an advocate for the folks in the communities we cover, I've been digging up phone numbers for people or even making a call or two myself to make sure I'm providing good information on the issues being reported. We're keeping our conversations nonpolitical and solution-based and people are responding positive.

That said, we're finding that town officials in some of our towns already have built "watch areas" and are taking part in the discussion. I suspect that soon every town will have a SeeClickFix watch area in north central Connecticut.

Doug Hardy
Associate Editor/Internet supervisor
Journal Inquirer

Facebook comment from Judith

"Nice piece, informative and interesting, and now I know about this useful site."