Wall Street Journal - Digital NetworkThe Wall Street Journal, with its gray front page and signature headshot pencil sketches of subjects of articles, might not be the first paper to come to mind when it comes to forward-thinking use of technology. But the business news institution has led the way online, integrating blogs and short video pieces to supplement the paper’s reporting.

That continues with The End of Wall Street, a three-part web series that attempts to break down the complicated financial collapse of late 2008.

The series, narrated by former Journal editor Dave Kansas, chronicles the financial troubles precipitated by the burst of the housing bubble. Kansas, now an Editor at Large for FiLife.com, also wrote the upcoming book The Wall Street Journal Guide to the End of Wall Street as We Know It: What You Need to Know About the Greatest Financial Crisis of Our Time–and How to Survive It.

Wall Street Journal - web seriesThe three part series kicked off with “What Happened?” giving the background to the housing bubble, including the involvement of Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac and the government’s desire to create an “ownership society.” Next, “Why It Happened” tries to explain the mindset of those that led the economy over the cliff. Finally, “What Happens Next?” asks where the string of government bailouts will end and if there’s a quick answer.

“The events of the past three months have torn apart the world financial system, shaken the very pillars of global capitalism, and are likely to result in the most serious economic downturn since the Great Depression,” said Alan Murray, deputy managing editor of the Journal and executive editor of WSJ.com in a press release. “This video is our attempt to explain how it happened.”

The full series is available at wsj.com/EndofWallStreet.

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