NY Times launches local websites network

Mar 03, 2009
The New York Times headquarters is seen February 19 in New York City. The New York Times has launched an experimental network of websites providing local community news and information for residents of neighborhoods in New York and New Jersey.

The New York Times has launched an experimental network of websites providing local community news and information for residents of neighborhoods in New York and New Jersey.

The newspaper said the online project, dubbed "The Local," is "part of an exploration by The Times of ways to extend its journalistic values to serve and engage audiences in new ways."

"The sites will feature posts by New York Times journalists and community members about everyday life in their neighborhoods, including news and information about schools, restaurants, businesses and real estate," it said.

In addition, they will feature "economic life, crime, government services, transportation, volunteer opportunities, outdoor activities, parenting issues and more," the Times said in a statement.

The newspaper said the websites will initially cover the neighborhoods of Clinton Hill and Fort Greene in Brooklyn and Maplewood, Millburn and South Orange in New Jersey.

For the Brooklyn sites, The Times said it will collaborate with the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism (CUNY) to "teach residents about reporting and the use of interactive media."

"CUNY journalism students will contribute to The Local and help area residents contribute," the Times said.

"We'll be reporting on the big concerns in these communities, from deer hunts to property taxes, crime to school budgets," said Jim Schachter, the Times editor for digital initiatives.

"And we'll be striving to empower residents to report on their own communities, as well as to contribute their creativity and ideas."

The Times said features of The Local will include a calendar of neighborhood events, wedding announcements, photos, news tips and death notices submitted by users.

The move into "hyperlocal" user-generated reporting comes as US newspapers, the Times included, struggle with a steep drop in print advertising revenue, declining circulation and the migration of readers to free news online.

Andy Newman, the Times reporter moderating the Brooklyn sites, provided an explanation for the move on the site's home page.

"There?s a growing consensus in the media world that one way that newspapers can sustain themselves is to foster what is known as participatory journalism or citizen journalism," he wrote. "The Times wants to see if it can find a sustainable way to do this."

"This is very much an experiment," he added. "As this venture grows, we?re hoping that a business model will emerge from it."

(c) 2009 AFP

Explore further: Digital dilemma: How will US respond to Sony hack?

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

In Lebanon, a garden blooms on former 'trash mountain'

Dec 11, 2014

Lebanon's southern city of Sidon is best known for its Crusader castle and ancient market, but a more modern landmark has marred its Mediterranean shoreline for decades—a towering "mountain" of trash.

Answers in a shake with Microsoft's Torque (w/ Video)

Dec 07, 2014

Microsoft Garage is what it sounds like, a techie haven where hackers, inventors and hackers who are potentially good inventors can pass around ideas and engage in team work so that ideas grow into real projects. ...

TV viewing support for color-blind emerges with Eyeteq

Dec 04, 2014

UK-based Spectral Edge has made its technology available for set-top TV boxes so that viewers who are color-blind can differentiate shades alongside viewers who are not color-blind. Eyeteq is the name of ...

Recommended for you

Digital dilemma: How will US respond to Sony hack?

Dec 18, 2014

The detective work blaming North Korea for the Sony hacker break-in appears so far to be largely circumstantial, The Associated Press has learned. The dramatic conclusion of a Korean role is based on subtle ...

UN General Assembly OKs digital privacy resolution

Dec 18, 2014

The U.N. General Assembly has approved a resolution demanding better digital privacy protections for people around the world, another response to Edward Snowden's revelations about U.S. government spying.

Online privacy to remain thorny issue: survey

Dec 18, 2014

Online privacy will remain a thorny issue over the next decade, without a widely accepted system that balances user rights and personal data collection, a survey of experts showed Thursday.

Spain: Google News vanishes amid 'Google Tax' spat

Dec 16, 2014

Google on Tuesday followed through with a pledge to shut down Google News in Spain in reaction to a Spanish law requiring news publishers to receive payment for content even if they are willing to give it away.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.