New York Times Divests from “The Local” Blogs
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When the New York Times partnered with the NYU School of Journalism two years ago to form The Local East Village, some in the already-established local blogosphere scowled. “Hyperlocal” was the buzzword of the moment, and big money jumped into a sandbox dominated by indie bloggers with fingers deep on the neighborhood pulse.
The ultimate goal of this “pilot program” was to meld pro reporting with citizen journalism, and scaling by selling targeted local online advertising. But the collaboration has apparently run its course. Indeed, Capital New York broke news earlier this week that the Grey Lady has decided to terminate these side-by-side joint ventures with both NYU and CUNY (for Fort Greene/Clinton Hill).
An anonymous senior Times editor intimated to Capital that, “This experiment has had a good run and the Times has learned some valuable lessons about hyperlocal journalism and collaboration…Now it wants to harvest those lessons and see where they might be applied.” Apparently web traffic did not figure into the decision.
In the wake of this news, both colleges are allegedly discussing next steps without the high-profile affiliation.