Street Fight Daily: Patch Layoffs Coming, ‘Pay-Per-Gaze’ Advertising

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A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal content, commerce, and technology

PatchPatch Layoffs Coming Today (AllThingsD)
AOL will begin laying off employees at its Patch unit on Friday, according to people familiar with the company’s plans. Last week, AOL CEO Tim Armstrong announced that he would shutter or try to find partners for up to 400 of his 900 local news sites.

Journatic Made ‘Very Poor Decisions’ About Content, Say Aggrego Founders (Poynter)
Chicago Sun-Times owner Wrapports LLC announced this week that it has launched a service called Aggrego, its own version of the troubled local news service Journatic. Aggrego CEO Tim Landon says he “fundamentally disagreed with Journatic’s management’s approach to the content and operating model. … I do believe in data and big data, but that’s not enough.”

Is Millennial Stuck in the ‘Middle Seat’ Even with JumpTap? (i2G)
Greg Sterling: Millennial is in a sort of metaphorical “middle seat”: neither big enough nor specialized enough. Accordingly it may be squeezed from “below” by specialist ad networks such as xAd and by programmatic buying. From “above,” the company faces tough competition from Google and Facebook.

How Hyperlocal Publishing Can Work (AdAge)
Alex Kantrowitz: Top-down hyperlocal news efforts such as Patch and The New York Times’ “Local” blogs have yet to prove successful, but many smaller, locally owned, community news sites are doing quite well. Operating at a smaller scale and with less funding, these smaller sites are finding profits where the biggest players are not.

The Future of Advertising: ‘Pay-Per-Gaze’ Is Just the Beginning (Mashable)
Advertising is going to change more in the next 20 years than it has in the last 100. If you need proof of that, just look at the patent Google was granted Thursday for a Google Glass-based ad system. Dubbed “pay-per-gaze,” the content would charge advertisers for the number of times someone literally looked at their ad.

With $13.3M In New Funding, Restorando Aims To Be The OpenTable Of Latin America (TechCrunch)
Restorando, a startup offering reservation tools to restaurants in Latin America, is announcing that it has raised $13.3 million in Series B funding. CEO Frank Martin told me that Restorando was designed to bring the OpenTable reservation model to Latin America.