Street Fight Daily: 10.14.11

A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal media, technology, advertising and startups...

MapQuest’s new Vibe uses data collected from the past 10 years about cities’ most popular destinations. Vijay Bangaru, MapQuest vice president of product, writes that the concept originated out of a shift in users’ needs from “maps and directions” to “local search.” (Mashable)…

Groupon and LivingSocial succeed because consumers perceive them as great deals. But is that true? Perhaps not. Thumbtack.com called 10 vendors offering daily deals (five from Groupon and five from LivingSocial) and found eight instances where they were quoted a price over the phone that was cheaper than the advertised regular price being offered. (Business Insider)…

Datasphere’s Cowan: Hitting the Hyperlocal ‘Sweet Spot’

Street Fight recently spoke with Gary Cowan, Datasphere’s SVP of product and marketing (who will be joining us at the Street Fight Summit in October) about the company’s content strategy, the future of the banner ad, and why his company’s sites aren’t “cookie cutter.”

WSB’s Tracy Record: You Can’t Do Hyperlocal on a Template

When West Seattle Blog launched, the site didn’t carry any ads — not even Google Adsense ads which co-founder Tracy Record thought were “ugly and cluttery.” At the time, the site was more of a passion project than a business. But when they finally got advertising two years later, Record says it didn’t take very long before she and her partner were turning a profit: “It was rather rapid in terms of people embracing us and we were in the black in the first year.” …