Introducing Crowdmap


When the Ushahidi platform was written as an open source project in 2008, the vision was to have a platform that any individual or organization could easily deploy in any situation. While providing the software for free to anyone to install on their own servers has worked well so far, we have realized that there was a need to rapidly deploy Ushahidi without any required technical acumen in the shortest amount of time possible. The answer to this challenge has been Crowdmap.

Crowdmap is a service provided by Ushahidi with all the benefits of Ushahidi out of the box but with nothing to install. It takes all of five minutes to get a vanilla deployment up and running on subdomain. You will have full administrative access to your deployment, just as you would if you installed it yourself. You will have the ability to choose themes, edit categories, solicit reports, just as you would if you had a server administrator get your deployment up and running. Crowdmap will even accept SMS reports from FrontlineSMS or your Clickatell account.

Crowdmap Account Deployment ManagementSetting up a deployment is easy. All it takes to get started is filling out a simple form with your password, a valid subdomain, name and tagline for your deployment and you’re good to go. After your site is setup, you log into your deployment and begin making modifications. When you are ready to start a second deployment, it’s just a matter of logging into your Crowdmap account at and clicking on “New Deployment”.

The functionality we have written to run Crowdmap is baked into the core Ushahidi code and we will be offering it as a standard component of your future Ushahidi downloads. You will be able to take Ushahidi and host your own deployments soon!

We are really excited to see what you all come up with using Crowdmap. Being able to rapidly deploy will give you opportunities to try things you wouldn’t normally have tried. We know you all will get out there and do awesome things with Crowdmap. Go ahead and give it a go!

20 Responses to “Introducing Crowdmap”

  1. Congratulations, everyone! Great that you’re able to continue innovating around the platform. What next, I wonder? ;o)

  2. Pablo@Google

    Excellent functionality guys! As always leading the way :)

  3. We’ve had somewhat of a rough start so far and we wanted to apologize for the technical issues that have come up. We have isolated the issue and have implemented a patch. We want to remain as transparent as possible so if you have any issues, feel free to send us an email at and we will personally respond. We also encourage you to follow us on twitter (@crowdmap) to stay abreast to issues we may be having.

    In order to fix this issue, it was necessary for us to reset site names and taglines to a generic, “Ushahidi” and “Tagline”. We apologize for getting involved in your individual deployment but because of the problem we were having, site names were being modified across subdomains. To change these titles and taglines, you can modify the settings at the settings page on

    If your password is not working when you log into your account via, please reset it using this form

    Again, if you have any questions of concerns, please follow up with us at and we will do my best to get back to you as fast as humanly possible.

    We are committed to providing you top quality service but there are bound to be issues as we ramp up our first cloud based service. Thank you for being supportive and we look forward to serving you now and in the future!

  4. Brian Herbert

    @Ben We wanted to differentiate between Ushahidi the open source software and Crowdmap the service, that way people aren’t confused when they are talking about their deployment of Ushahidi or their deployment of Crowdmap.

  5. Fantastic, thanks! Can Crowdmap update automatically from designated Twitter feeds vs. hashtags? Thanks!

  6. Very exciting. I hope we can use it to map services and barriers for persons with disabilities in a rural area in India. Probably I am not very tech-savvy and can’t understand how to change location, how to set up the system, etc. Some step by step tutorials by more experienced persons will be hugely helpful. Thanks again.

  7. Hector Alfaro

    Is there a substantial difference between Crowdmap and Ushahidi (besides the web-based, server-based software and no installation of server needed)?

    What are the pros and cons of having one over the other?