The news media is starting to catch on to using Google’s map making tools to help illustrate news which has a geospatial context. The California fires last month was the biggest recent example. Now two local news outfits have begun documenting the situation with the San Francisco oil spill by using Google Maps. The San Francisco Chronicle has pictures and video showing the oil spill’s consequences. And San Jose’s KCBS map has created a map showing the areas affected and the extent of the oil’s impact. You can view both of these maps in Google Earth together by clicking on the KML link in each map, or click here and here . I find viewing maps like this in Google Earth to be more informative since with GE you can see the 3D terrain, view multiple maps without too much clutter, and it’s faster. Hopefully more news agencies around the world will start catching on and begin using mapping tools to illustrate the news. via Google Lat Long.