Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Blogger: Hyperlocal Websites will Boom in 2009 as Community Newspapers Fold

Duncan Riley writes:

Hyperlocal websites have for a long time been an albatross of the 2.0 world; many have tried to create vibrant startups in the space, and many have failed.

There is some argument about the definition of hyperlocal; some say its news at a town or suburb level, while others argue its news for a community, but not an entire city or large town. For the purposes of this post, Hyperlocal means community news, serving a town or local Government area, often below a large city or State.

That there is demand for community news is a given, the issue has been delivering hyperlocal news online with a sustainable business model. The problem so far has been one primarily driven by competition: many towns and local communities have been served by a local community newspaper for years, and while some of the attention has switched online, the switch hasn’t been large enough so far to sustain hyperlocal news sites that by their very nature have a limited and small audience constrained by geography.

2009 though will be different. Hyerlocal websites, both existing and those to launch will thrive as they become the only place to find community news; in 2009 community newspapers will fold in record numbers.

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