I have just had a fascinating Skype call with Marlita Reddy-Hjelmfelt about VOST (Virtual Operations Support Teams) – groups of online volunteers who help the emergency services monitor and curate social activity around things like forest fires and hurricanes. For instance they use Tweetgrid to capture tweets based on geo tags in concentric rings around the centre of the incident. They also curate information from diverse related agencies and news feeds along with Facebook, Twitter, even Pinterest, to give an overall picture of what is happening and people’s reactions to what is happening. Fascinating stuff. Thanks for to Garret Vreeland for the connection.