Monday, December 9, 2013

October/November 2013: The issues of hyperlocal journalism

It's no secret the newspaper industry has faced increasingly difficult economic restrictions over the past two decades. Regardless of size or quality, every newspaper has dealt with severe cutbacks. One of the proposed solutions has been "hyperlocal" news sites. In larger areas, they have been touted as a way to restore the community connections that metro dailies lost as cities spilled over into ever-widening suburbs and newsrooms struggled to keep up. In smaller areas, while community journalism has remained relatively strong, such sites have been tried as a way to help those smaller organizations retain relevance in an always-on online world.
In this issue, we have two pieces that deal with hyperlocal coverage and its challenges. K. Paul Mallasch started the Muncie Free Press in 2005 and while financial success has been low to moderate, the website can lay a foundation for future local news sites. Richard Puffer runs through the recently departed Harstville Today website, which he believes can still be an influential example of local journalism.
Respond to Mr. Mallasch's and Mr. Puffer's article at The Convergence Newsletter blog and at the newsletter's Facebook or Google+ pages. View the full archive of newsletters at

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