Category Archives: Publishing

Regional papers bounce back through hyperlocal news

There is a very interesting article in todays Independent by Ian Burrel that outlines the recovery in the regional press in Britain over recent months.

Avertising revenues are up and new titles are being published.  It is claimed that this is in no part due to a strong emphasis on local and hyperlocal news and surprise, surprise growing digital revenues!!

All I can say is well done to everyone involved, lets hope there is more to come.

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NY Times to launch East Village Hyperlocal site

Lostremote reports that the NY Times is to launch another in its series of hyperlcoal sites, this time in the East Village on the 13th of September.

Interestingly this will include access to a “virtual assignment desk” providing an “editorial work flow system” that any registered user of the NY Times can access.  This sounds a really interesting development and like Lostremote I look forward to seeing it in action.

Fron shovelware to scaperware

Scraperwiki are holding another event for info hackers, journalists and other interested parties in how to successfully build apps to find, collect and interpret freely available information on the web.  

It’s on Friday October 15th 2010 from 9.30 am to 7.30 pm at the MadLab, 36-40 Edge Street, M4 1HN Manchester and comes on the back of similar events in Birmingham and Liverpool.  Anyone interested in hyperlocal journalism could do worse than take the opportunity to familiarise themselves with these tools and techniques.

NY Times terminates hyperlocal test

Roy Greenslade says that the New York Times is pulling out of its online hyperlocal news initiative, The Local, after 18 months.

Spanish-language newspapers in NY and LA to train bloggers to report and sell ads

Now this is interesting and really gets to the heart of the challenge of replicating the existing cultural and business models of newspapers and their on-line future.  “ImpreMedia, the nation’s No.1 Spanish-language online and print news publisher, announced today its plans to introduce hyperlocal coverage, initially in New York and Los Angeles, via community blogging partnerships”.  This includes an impressive four week training course for bloggers in hyperlocal journalism and media sales, “El Diario La Prensa in New York and La Opinion in Los Angeles. Mr. Paton said the company will also give the bloggers training in sales and create mutually beneficial sales arrangements.”   Some may disagree with this from a professional point of view, but I can see the logic and potential.

Hyperlocal is not everything local (still)

Cory Bergman at Lostremote raises the perennial question as to “why is it that so many journalists keep confusing “hyperlocal” with local?” A theme that has been raised on hyperlcoalworld before.

Equally he notes the odd position of big media companies who seem to have a very vague grasp of physical geography and that “It seems that any site that’s not run by a major media company that covers local news is suddenly hyperlocal — MinnPost covers a state, Voice of San Diego covers a city and Loudoun Extra covered a county are frequently mislabeled.”

He also makes the perfectly sensible point that, “Neighborhood news sites are hyperlocal because they offer a new layer of granular coverage that isn’t available on local news sites:” or for that matter resourceable or manageable in a conventional media structure.  But are good news to nervous shareholders.

Hyperlocal, the Guardian and local data

There is an excellent postojb on the Online Journalism Blog from Paul Bradshaw about the UK Guardians plans for local/regional information services. 

If things weren’t bad enough for the regional press in Britain the idea that a national title wants a piece of their action is very unwelcome news.  However I agree with Paul entirely and see this as an absolutely natural move by the Guardian based on its developing expertise in data management and distribution.  I also think that his point about them becoming a hyperlocal PA is also well made and fits into one of my expectations about the need for hyperlcoal publishers to provide contextual ‘stuff’ in support of the  ‘hyperlocal stuff’ – at a cost close to zero. 

It also raises the very interesting point that the regional press, by and large, are and have been institutions that dealt in news first and information second.  The idea that they can suddenly change course and create value from information collection, aggregation, analysis, manipulable and dissemination is actually very unlikely, but is central to the way the web works..

Hyperlocal news – its Pan-local really!

For anyone interested in understanding how a hyperlocal news site works should check out the interview by Matthew Sollars of CUNY of Mike Orren from Pegasus News the local news serice for Dallas-Fort Worth area.

What is interesting here is Mike’s concept of ‘pan-local’ coverge, which I think is a very sensible perspective. In essence its the idea that while it is vital to have a hyper-local core to your service you also need a wider context of news to complement this and demonstrate how these relate to each other. Mike also talks about the logistic difficulties of doing such a thing. 

Perhaps it illustrates another example where new kinds of partnerships and alliances may need to be developed if hyperlocal is really going to work.

National local, local-local and hyper-local – they are all local to someone!

I would like to recommend the lively and passionate discussion going on over at the Jackson Free Press about (amongst other things) the meaning of the word local. 

Editor-in-chief Donna Lad has taken issue with Shoplocal over the behaviour of large corporations and big brands and what she sees as unreasonable competition in small towns.  They have responded, outlining their conceptual model of local including; national local, local-local and hyper-local.

This is in itself fascinating enough. But I think the underlying tension between local community economic interests and national corporate interests is what is really interesting here.   An area of friction that I think hyperlocal news will return to again and again.

ps I am working on a nano-local message on a post-it note for my wife.

Hyperlocal video: The Future of Local Video

Here’s an interesting series of videos from Wellcomemat on the future of local video. 

welcomematIt consists of a panel discussion involving; Richard Blakeley – Video Editor | Gawker Media, Kelly Roark – VP Interactive Sales & Development | HGTV/Frontdoor, Teddy Stoecklein – Creative Director & Video Producer, BBDO, Doug Heddings – NY Real Estate Broker, TrueGotham.com, Andrew Kaplan – Business Development Manager, TURNHERE.com