Tomorrowland: How AOL’s Digital City Foreshadowed More Than the Future of Local

Creating and operating city guides for all major U.S. markets turned out to be something of a cover. What we were really doing was running a skunkworks project with few boundaries on creativity — where success or “failing-fast” were not the goals…

We’ve Seen the Past — And It Is ‘The Neighborhood’

For the past few years, social startups have been spiraling inward toward a smaller and smaller target: your neighborhood, your block. Now Patch is going all in by to leverage neighborhoods through communities of interest. But maybe neighborhoods are an artificial constructs, with borders that mean little even to those they bind. If that’s the case, we need to rethink a lot more than design and tools and lessons of the past…

Webster Says Patch Must ‘Be the Community,’ Others Weigh In

This is a the third installment in a series about hyperlocal past and present. Read here about Digital City / AOL, CitySearch, and Microsoft’s Sidewalk

I reached out to Warren Webster, President of AOL’s Patch network, the day before their big multi-thousand-blogger launch for thoughts on some of the views of the “Local 1.0” set discussed in the previous posts in this series. In an email he said: “It’s important to note that Patch isn’t citizen journalism. Patch is a platform staffed by professional journalists with an average of nine years experience. Patch also offers many opportunities for members of the community to have a voice on this platform — and for SMBs to drive consumer actions.”..

Hyperlocal 1.0: Matt Kursh Remembers Microsoft’s Sidewalk

A serious contender and moneyed innovator, Microsoft Sidewalk took to the local Web the way the behemoth did most things: with lots of muscle. It quickly squared off with CitySearch over advertising share and rapidly expanded its editorial footprint across the nation – carrying itself with arguably the most style among the hyperlocal contenders.