Social Network Swidjit Develops Local Currency/Barter System

CEO Alex Colket hopes the hyperlocal social network will centralize many of the key functions of Facebook, Twitter, Craigslist, Meetup and Yelp, into one. Swidjit allows users to post “have its” or “want its” to facilitate an online bartering system. The website launched on May 1, and items exchanged thus far include baby strollers, mattresses and even rides to Syracuse, N.Y.

Cont3nt Connects Local Publishers With Freelance Multimedia Journalists

The explosion of mobile content creation and sharing has enabled citizen journalists all over the world to upload and broadcast news immediately, wherever it’s happening. But folks on the ground at a news event rarely get paid for their reporting. Cont3nt, a new wire-service of sorts, is hoping to supply publications with relevant place-based images and videos by connecting them directly with freelance journalists…

EveryBlock Updates App to Facilitate Mobile Sharing of Local News

Brian Addison, the company’s president, said the revamped app allows for “the sharing of news with neighbors as it unfolds.” He says that apps like Everyblock’s “help publishers stay top of mind with their audience. We’ve reached a point where having your logo occupy a prominent place on a user’s second screen is the linchpin for loyalty.”

Talk About Local’s Hartley: U.K. Hyperlocals Looking for Scale

The U.K. has been a rich testing ground for hyperlocal content plays over the past few years. But British projects have taken a slightly different flavor than we’re used to here in the U.S., says Sarah Hartley, a veteran journalist who has been involved in some notable stabs at conquering the local space..

5 Can’t-Miss SXSWi Panels for the Local-Obsessed

There’s plenty of hyperlocal-themed content to be found in the festival’s programming. If you’re into LBS and the evolution of location technology, here’s a rundown of relevant panels you won’t want to miss…

Steve Outing: No One’s Got a ‘Magic Bullet’ for Hyperlocal Revenue

The founder and program director at the Digital News Test Kitchen at CU-Boulder studies the places where journalism and technology collide. Here he talks with Street Fight about where the concept of hyperlocal has been, where it’s going, and how technology is increasingly impacting how journalists do their job…

Digital Pioneer David Cohn: Hyperlocals Need Passion AND Revenue

David Cohn, founder of, a nonprofit pioneer in community-funded reporting, has been hired by the UC/Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism to help develop a sustainable business model for hyperlocals.  He will run three Ford Foundation-funded, student-staffed  hyperlocals in the Bay Area, with the aim of making them self-supporting. As he began his new assignment, […]

Case Study: For Seattle Video Store, Print is Still King

Remaining relevant is a challenge for any independent video store that has to compete with subscription-based companies like Netflix. Next Door Media, an ad network of hyperlocal sites, took on that challenge with Scarecrow Video in Seattle, adding its sites to the store’s traditional mix of weekly newspapers, free magazines, and public radio stations…

Are Big Media’s Partnerships With Seattle ‘Indies’ the Future of Hyperlocal?

In the furiously expanding, highly competitive and often conflicted hyperlocal space, some pieces appear to be coming together. Just possibly, highly digital Seattle may be the birthplace for what has long eluded hyperlocal: a sustainable  business model.

I’m talking about the new partnerships between Fisher Interactive Network—the online division of multimedia Fisher Communications—and two hyperlocal “indies” in Southeast Seattle, Beacon Hill Blog and the Rainier Valley Post

Mission Local: A Hyperlocal that Does It Right

Over the course of the past few weeks the Mission District of San Francisco has been rocked by two shootings. Mission Local was all over it.The publication is a public-private partnership that publishes stories in English and Spanish focused on this district, which still has a strong Latino population…

Ex-NYC Deputy Mayor: Hyperlocals Should Help Citizens ‘March on City Hall’

Journalism and community are rapidly converging in the hyperlocal space. But the big missing piece is meaningful participation by local government. Mayors, city and town managers and other local public officials may have Twitter accounts or Facebook pages, but too often they’re used for carefully managed image messages–not for joining citizens in serious problem solving. Stephen […]

Who Will Eat the Hyperlocal Donut?

In big, dense metro areas, dailies are struggling but will likely survive. Or, savvy hyperlocals will be able to capitalize on urban density to maintain coverage and still run viable businesses. In the rural areas, where newspapers are still the only game in town, local media continues to do pretty well and hold their own. But gaps are starting to show in the zone between the cities and the sticks…

Case Study: Tracking the Success of an Online Ad

For Richard Stromberg, owner of Chicago Photography Classes, hyperlocal news sites and blogs have taken the place of traditional print publications. To track the effectiveness of his online ads, he uses printable coupons that new clients are encouraged to bring to class for discounted rates...

Denver Post Unveils ‘New’ YourHub. But Is It New Enough?

Six years ago YourHub was major media’s first big foray into hyperlocal. It was the answer to newspapers desperately looking to replace shrinking print  revenues with digital gold. But digital gold, like the real stuff, is not easy to find. What happened in Denver is a sobering case study about metro newspapers and hyperlocal publishing.

A ‘Community Service Model’ for Hyperlocal

When merchants and civic organizations produce content for local publications, they develop their brand, engage their community and, as a result, market themselves. This new hyperlocal model would serve the business, nonprofit and civic sectors by providing the free open source media they need to deliver news and promote their agendas inside the community. Call it the community service media model…

Relying on Facebook When Google+ is Rising Looks Risky

Over the past year, an awful lot of small businesses and hyperlocal media players have bet the farm on Facebook, ditching traditional standalone websites and go all-in on a Facebook presence. I wonder whether they are reconsidering that decision now that Google+ is on the rise.

Case Study: Ads on Hyperlocal Blogs Reach Local Customers

As the owner of Urban Ashes, a home furnishings company in Michigan that uses salvaged wood from local yards, parks and urban areas, Paul Hickman believes strongly in supporting local businesses and causes. This carries over to the way he markets his business: Hickman regularly advertises on hyperlocal news sites like The Ann Arbor Chronicle to connect with residents who are well-educated and want to support local enterprises like his.

Why Hyperlocals Are Making Anonymity Obsolete

I don’t ordinarily read anonymous comments, but “patriotmommy” stopped my browsing eyes recently on Patch’s Reston, Va., site. I was reading an upbeat story about graduation at the high school where my two daughters were educated. The article noted that South Lakes High produced a “record number” of International Baccalaureate candidates this year. At the […]

Is TapIn the Future of Hyperlocal?

To be honest, I hate writing about this startup because it was an idea I wanted to pursue myself. But over the past week I’ve been playing with TapIn, a hyperlocal news application created by Silicon Valley software startup Tackable. Available in the iTunes store, TapIn allows users to overlay a variety of pieces of information (deals, news, events) over a local interface. But what I was really interested in, more than anything, was the photo assignment engine behind Tackable.

In Hyperlocal News, Mom-and-Pop Shops Will Win

Economies of scale do not apply in hyperlocal news. Rather than going up with scale, CPMs not only go down—they disappear. If Gap buys an ad across a network of hyperlocal sites, the CPM will likely be lower than if a local store advertises, because the Gap can buy that region from any number of sources. Conversely, the corner grocer will pay a comparatively premium CPM when they know for sure their ads show up in the right place.