Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Hyperlocal isn't useful in the Netherlands

Been analysing the attempts to get hyperlocal sites going in the Netherlands. The results are mixed. I think they contribute something to local news gathering in the East of the country (well away from Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Utrecht) but in the media city area of "het Gooi" the news is rather useless. This morning there came the news that a jeweller in Bussum had been robbed. But no details of what had been taken, or if there was anyone injured in the robbery were available. So what's the point? Has the street been closed so traffic cant get into Bussum? We're not told. In previous weeks they have posted video on Dichtbij.nl ( which means Nearby) but these are just raw pictures of police clearing up after traffic accidents (no commentary) and I don't see what it adds to the news story, except an element of voyerism. I cannot believe that local businesses really want to be involved. Compare that with the Kings Cross Blog  in London which is run by the community, for the community, and attracts up to 500 readers a day. I'm sure they read it.

1 comment:

William Perrin said...

thanks for your link to our kings cross website. I don't know the dutch situation, but one should always be wary of attempts to get networks going from the top down. the best sites come from the bottom up, usually when a local person with something interesting to say acquires the simple skills needed to publish to the web - in Fbook, on a blog or twitter.

we are yet to see a proliferation of hyperlocal models viable on a traditional commercial basis in any country, sites tend to be run by volunteers as an adjunct to their community or neighbourhood work or hobby, only rarely commercially. it doesn't mean they aren't long term viable though.

It probably isn't reasonable to expect a uniform experience across a country - there will always be some areas better than others.

drop me a line over at talk about local dot org