The Litterati app works with users taking photos of litter they’ve spotted and thrown away and allows for the creation of groups and challenges
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Spotted: Litterati, a free app, uses crowdsourced data to encourage campaigns to clean up the streets. The company was started after founder Jeff Kirschener came across a creek filled with rubbish while on a hiking trip. Kirschener took pictures of the trash and posted them to Instagram with the Litterati hashtag. Within days, others started posting pics of litter from around the world in response.
Kirschener launched the Litterati app in 2016, which works with users taking photos of litter they’ve spotted, and then them throwing it away. The app automatically geo-tags the image, so that people and organisations can form groups and set challenges, such as collecting a certain amount of litter from a particular location. They can also invite friends to reach a combined goal or join an existing challenge.
Thanks to the geo-tagging, users can also see the impact they are having on local environments, as well as the most common type of rubbish in particular areas. This is particularly important, both to inspiring companies to act more responsibly and in developing policy. For example, the company’s data was used to defend a tax on cigarettes, which would fund the clean-up of littered butts. It has also been used to encourage companies to use recyclable packaging.
There is no shortage of innovative ideas when it comes to cleaning up litter. Some of the ideas showcased on Springwise have included a way to turn gum into new products, and a power plant that runs on clothing.
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