Local hype

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“Reporting in the regions is reverting to remote-control journalism with the proverbial email giving a convenient but one sided account of public meetings with no journalists present. Important markings such as Circuit Courts and Inquests, once the bread and butter of the local paper are going uncovered, unreported and unrecorded as regional newsrooms either don’t have the resources or requisite skills to reach on matters of such public import.”

John Whelan, addressing a media conference in February, painted a grim picture. But while traditional titles are shutting down (and I don’t understate how serious that is), “hyperlocals” are cropping up in Ireland.

Hyperlocals, news websites covering a defined local area – are already a big deal elsewhere. In essence, a hyperlocal is a web only provincial newspaper. Two examples I know of are the Donegal Daily and the Newry Times.

In the case of the Donegal Daily, the journalists involved make their money from a combination of local advertising and onward sales of major stories to national titles. Barriers to entry are low, the journalists work without the debt burdens of established titles. And perhaps best of all, they own the business.

Do you know of any other Irish hyperlocals?

UPDATE: Another Irish hyperlocal site: Wicklow News.

Image (modified) via Morguefile.com

 

By Gerard Cunningham

Gerard Cunningham occupies his time working as a journalist, writer, sub-editor, blogger and tweeter, yet still finds himself underemployed. Go figure.

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