By Benét J. Wilson, DJTF co-chair, Online Managing Editor-Business Aviation, Aviation Week Group
Earlier this week, I found a rash of articles on the past, present and future of hyperlocal websites, currently being touted as one of the possible saviors of journalism. Instead of just putting links to the articles on our @NABJDigital Twitter account, I thought I’d post the links below and offer some commentary.
- From Lost Remote: Hyperlocal network Neighbortree raises $120,000. Last month’s NABJ annual conference had plenty of panels dealing with journalists following their entrepreneurial dreams. So now any article that mentions how to fund those dreams, I read with interest. Neighbortree went to angel investors to help it fund a network of hyper-hyperlocal sites. And they’re looking for people interesting in starting their own site!
- From the Hyperlocal List: Getting a hyperlocal grip on international news. This post talks about how the writer turned to the Poynter Institute’s News University to help cover — hyperlocally — international communities. The website refers readers to free, self-guided seminar called “Reporting Global Issues Locally” offered tips on how to tie international events with local issues, without driving a newsroom into the ground and without necessarily focusing on only one immigrant group.
- From Lost Remote: The writer recommends reading a post from the American Journalism Review on the hazards of hyperlocal. Lost Remote agrees with writer Barb Palser that it’s hard to make money off hyperlocal sites, but disagrees with her point that “there may not be enough interest in community news to sustain the sites.” My thought is that as newspapers continue to shrink their local coverage, people will need to turn somewhere to find that news.
- From Lost Remote: The blog takes a look at how the Miami Herald is handling its hyperlocal website. The newspaper is one of five in partnership under J-Lab’s Networked Journalism Project. Former Herald reporter Ana Acle-Menendez is overseeing the newspaper’s West Kendall Today hyperlocal website.
- From Lost Remote: We end with a post on the blog about exactly how to distinguish hyperlocal from local. It points us to a great blog post from Sarah Hartley on her blog, who makes a good effort to answer that very question.