A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal content, commerce, and technology.
NextDoor, the Social Network for Neighborhoods, Raises $18.6M (GigaOm)
The San Francisco startup NextDoor is getting a big endorsement in the form of $18.6 million in new funding to pursue this market, which is turning out to be promising. NextDoor said it now has about 3,700 neighborhoods on board in 48 states with a median of 600 to 700 members in each network.
YP.com Freshens Up Homepage, Creates Higher Expectations for the Inside (Screenwerk)
Greg Sterling: YP.com redesigned its homepage, continuing the site’s evolution from an online directory to something broader and more lifestyle oriented. The company is moving in the right (and necessary) direction with its new homepage and related improvement, but it should also recognize that it’s creating higher expectations for what people will find inside.
Reinventing the Billboard (Inc.)
New interactive displays have been on Chicago streets and venues since December, when the new start-up Elevate Digital took the plunge into interactive advertising in high-density areas. The displays include large 46- to 55-inch touchscreens that offer not only hyperlocal Groupon deals for retailers within the vicinity, but also a wealth of content people might want, such as city information and attractions, news, transportation information, and even a 911 app that lets passersby contact the police in the event of an emergency.
Could Kickstarter Be Used to Crowdfund Journalism? (GigaOm)
Matthew Ingram: The idea of crowdfunding journalism isn’t a new one: journalist and entrepreneur David Cohn started a company called Spot.us in 2008 to do exactly that, and had some notable successes. That said, I’m not sure whether a platform like Kickstarter or Indiegogo or even Spot.us would work that well if a campaign were to be started by a major newspaper or the owner of a chain like Advance Publications, which has been laying off staff and shutting down printing at some of its newspapers.
Moasis Unveils An Accessible Approach To Location-Targeted Ads (TechCrunch)
Startup Moasis is offering advertisers a new way to run location-targeted ads, one that could hopefully make the process more accessible to both ad agencies and small businesses. As the name implies, the heart of the platform is a grid-based approached to ad targeting — markets are divided into grids, then advertisers can select the grids where they want their ads to be shown.
Meet the Food Discovery Site for Foodies ‘Frustrated With Yelp’ (Mashable)
Taste Savant is a restaurant discovery platform that features reviews from select food experts and highlights what your Facebook and Twitter friends are saying about a restaurant. The company’s editorial team curates the restaurant discovery site by adding new eateries as they open and take down shops that don’t fare well among the reviewers.