Presenting, the ‘Local People' network
From New Media Age; Associated Northcliffe Digital has launched the first phase of its hyperlocal sites, rolling out 23 local community sites in South West England.
What is interesting here is that these are in small geographical communities, previously weakly served by traditional newspapers and are structured around an editor (a gatewatcher?) and a community of local contributors. They are branded under the concept of the ‘Local People’ network, and Cliftonpeople is one of the first wave. Once again the geographical community is the key here, the radical idea being that local identity is a powerful social force. I actually think that the newspapers are on to something, but they will need to nurture them very carefully and support the early adopters in building value that other people become interested in. I suspect that this is going to become a very crowded market very quickly.