Neighbortree provides free, interactive neighborhood websites to any type of residential community, including traditional neighborhoods, subdivisions, condominiums and apartment buildings. Think of it as a sort of Ning for neighborhoods.
Since this requires a hyper-local approach (we’re talking physical, not virtual communities), its business depends on developing partnerships with other companies that can execute its network model at the metro or state level. The startup says most of the angel funding will be allocated towards establishing these types of partnerships.
Dawson also predicts news will more and more be delivered via that rumormill called crowdsourcing. “Substantial parts of investigative journalism, writing and news production will be ‘crowdsourced’ to hordes of amateurs overseen by professionals,” he predicts without saying what the quality and reliability will be. Can you imagine getting your news from the people who comment on blogs?
I tend to say that I am looking at both describing and then measuring informal civic behaviours within hyperlocal communities and then more specifically looking at what the online civic spaces will look like if we want to connect them to formal democratic processes.
Archive for August, 2010
Beyond matching newspaper stories, AOL and Yahoo intend to leverage citizen journalists to fill their sites with inexpensively produced original content. In its initial email effort to recruit writers in San Francisco, Associated Content promised $10 for the first article.
As users of hyperlocal sites trade topical relevance for geographical relevance, so do advertisers. The anticipated explosion of online ad spending by local small businesses is driving many of today's hyperlocal efforts. But it may well be that geography isn't always the best measure of relevance. Is an advertiser better off casting a wide net across a close area, or using behavioral or contextual targeting to reach the most likely customers even if they live farther away?
"Only the Cabinet Office can set this standard. It does sound a bit wet [to be waiting for that instead of just doing it in the council] but this is what's actually stopping it happening. There's a huge saving to be made. If just half of councils moved half of their employees from Microsoft Office formats to ODF the cost of running desktops could come down dramatically – it would save £51m. If all of the councils moved all of their employees off Office, the savings would be £200m, though of course you're not going to get that happening."
It appears to suggest it will also encourage users to Rate A Business via a star panel, or even sign up and review the businesses, much like TripAdvisor. Screen shot 2010-08-27 at 13.26.59
Business owners will also be able to apply to add their companies for free which will also be tagged on local maps.
Video looks like it could feature extensively, along with a jobs board.
Others areas include boxes for what is 'Trending' in an area, extensive what's on tabs, reviews and Top 10 recommendations.
The Qype features, which include local business listings, will "replace and significantly upgrade" Johnston Press' existing directory website, which was built in house.
"As well as integrating context specific content into local websites this software will provide a local entertainment and events database," the results report says.
It does, however, give you a choice of websites to visit so you can copy the link in the usual way. The suggested photos – from sources like Wikipedia or Flickr’s Creative Commons libraries – were relevant and as easy as the video suggests to just slot in, fully captioned and credited. It also gave me a nice choice of recommended websites for the end to turn on or off. This is an improvement on the previous version of this feature that could sometimes give some random choices.
We are accelerating our investment in our significant online and mobile initiative, STV Local, launching the first pilot area in September. During the second half of 2010 and into 2011, STV Local, working with local content partners, will launch 'must visit' hyper-local websites for local communities across Scotland. STV has recruited a high calibre staff to work in the business but will also incorporate user generated content, making STV Local a truly interactive experience, at the heart of our digital strategy.
In fact, only one of 1989's top 10 evening papers can beat the Express & Star's 48.8% sales fall – and that is its stablemate in the Midlands News Association, the Shropshire Star.
As Tiedt told is, the food cart site, which was developed by a single programmer at Microsoft, is a good example of the services that Microsoft hopes to create in the future. Portland is currently a test market for Microsoft and given that the city is known for its food and music scene, it makes sense for the company to launch a food oriented service, as well as sponsoring Alpha Broadcasting's new Bing Lounge for live performances (Bing will showcase these performances on its entertainment site).
Full figures for the individual news websites in the ABCe report for January to June 2010 are listed below. The first figure is the average monthly unique browsers for that site; the figure in brackets indicates the percentage change from figures reported by the ABCe for July to December 2009.
What, if anything, the term ‘hyperlocal’ now means is something that keeps coming up in conversations I have and it strikes me that it’s no longer necessarily defined by a tight geographical area, but instead seems to have evolved to describe more of an attitude than a place.
Often it’s the subject matter that could be termed ‘hyperlocal’ (eg. littering reports) or a story treatment (eg. data maps) but even sites which cover large geographical areas (eg. the city blogs which I look after for Guardian Local) are referred to as ‘hyperlocal’. Can these things be considered ‘hyperlocal in nature, even if that’s not true of their scale or scope?
I’ve been thinking about what it is that links them, what’s meant when we use the shorthand ‘hyperlocal’ and identified the following ten characteristics. Not all sites display all these characteristics and, before the print lobby gets over excited, yes of course a lot of these characteristics are present in local newspapers as well.
I’m quite sure there’s other things I haven’t clocked, so please do let me know any more that should be included.
Plus, is it time to find a term which would better describe what we’ve come to mean or do you think ‘hyperlocal’ is well used enough to keep? Please do let me know in the comments below.
- Participation from the author. To my mind, this is the biggest single hyperlocal attitude characteristic – the blogger, writer, journalist or whoever it is running the site participates in activities in the community. Includes activity on, and offline.
- Opinion blended with facts. Can sometimes be related to point one but generally a less distinctive, more blurry line of difference between what is reported and what is opinion is commonplace. The author’s personal take on an issue can be more pronounced than would be expected in a piece of traditional news journalism.
- Participation from the community. Whether it’s commenting, submitted material such as pictures and tips or crowdsourced information, hyperlocal means involving others in its production.
- Small is big. When it comes to news values, the agenda can be distinctly different to that of a traditional news outlet because scale is not important, impact is.
- Medium agnostic. Use of different platforms is a very common characteristic with Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, LinkedIn, Audioboo etc. being deployed as and when required.
- Obsessiveness. I mean this in a good way! Hyperlocal-ers seem more likely to stick with a story, update it’s every change and so take proper advantage of having no restrictions on space that blogs provide. Is this the hyper in hyperlocal?
- Independence. The publishers of these sites tend to pride themselves on being independent and see not being answerable to a mainstream organisation meaning they’re able to be more responsive to their community.
- Link lovers. I’ve struggled to find any hyperlocal sites that aren’t generous in their linking policy and why wouldn’t they be? Linking out is a natural state of affairs for bloggers who don’t pretend they are omnipresent when resources don’t allow.
- Passion. Most of these sites were set up as labours of love – and it shows. That sort of (more often than not unpaid) enthusiasm is very attractive to users who’re savvy at spotting disinterest or ulterior motives.
- Lack of money. Sorry to end the list on this but…..it doesn’t seem the revenue question has been fully answered yet, or if it has, I’ve not spotted it and would love to hear from the person that has.
PaperG’s Flyerboard is effectively a virtual bulletin board, the standard design even mimics the appearance of fliers on a corkboard. A local retailer submits an image and some basic information and Flyerboard automatically converts that data into an interactive ad that can be easily shared via social networks, like Facebook and Twitter, or e-mail. Through the ad platform, publishers can quickly post and manage their ads, look at analytics, and bill clients.
Let’s put this Patch push into perspective. About 400 new sites, spread out across the country. Five hundred new journalists being hired. Let’s remember, though, that this is one journalist per community, communities that range in size from 10,000 to 80,000 people. One journalist per community.
However, building a YouTube channel to sit alongside your indie website, whether it’s a blog, online magazine or hyperlocal, is much easier than many people would think. You can build the channel out to look exactly like your existing site, and with some good content and clever use of title tags you could find yourself attracting lots of new readers that may never have found you otherwise.
Work demands mean I’ll be unable to devote enough time to make blogging here at Mancunian Way meaningful over the next few weeks.
Although that means I’m taking a break here, I will be continuing to blog from time to time about the city’s blogging scene, hyperlocal journalism and open data moves for The Guardian. Please do contact me on the email SarahMancunianWay AT Googlemail.com if you’ve details of activities or events which you think would be of interest to that readership.
I’d also be interested in hearing from anyone who’d like to contribute to this blog going forward, same address. While I can’t guarantee fame and fortune will follow involvement, there is an established readership and previous contributors seem to have enjoyed it! So, if you’re interested in blogging without the pressure or commitment of starting a whole new site, drop me a line.