Globe expands Your Town

The Boston Globe has rolled out six more Your Town hyperlocal sites, the subject of so much angst (and a lawsuit) last winter. Unlike the original iteration, the sites now feature mostly Globe content, with a few links to community sites. Your Town is now in 10 communities.

My quick perusal reveals no links to GateHouse’s Wicked Local sites, even though the out-of-court settlement between GateHouse and the New York Times Co. allows linking as long as the Globe doesn’t resume its practice of running an automated feed of GateHouse content on Your Town.

Interesting that the Globe continues its local push even as the Times Co. threatens to close the paper.

The new sites are on the South Shore (Hingham, Norwell and Scituate) and in the urban communities of Medford, Malden and Melrose. Here’s an e-mail that went out to the staff on Friday from David Dahl, the Globe’s regional editor:

All,

This week we launched six more Your Town sites, bringing to 10 the number of our hyperlocal sites. The new communities are Hingham, Scituate, Norwell, Medford, Malden and Melrose. You can find the sites at boston.com/hingham, boston.com/scituate, etc.

As many of you know, in addition to posts from Globe correspondents and staffers, the sites offer a collection of links to other blogs and websites, interactive opportunities for readers to post events and to report potholes and other problems, and, coming soon, improved blogging tools to allow readers to more easily post words and photos on our sites.

The sites enable us to reach deeper — and on a daily basis — into the communities that we’ve covered for years in our zoned sections. And the effort represents another collaborative effort between the Globe and our colleagues at boston.com to boost our local online effort.

Thursday’s Globe North offers a good example of our early successes. Steve Rosenberg wrote a story about municipal salaries for the city of Medford, the latest in a series of muni salary stories to come out of the zones this year. Eric Bauer created a searchable database of the top 100 salaries. We published the story and database at boston.com/medford and in Globe North.

The response: several thousand page views, and 50 reader comments. “Great expose of public information. Plenty more out there. Next story: follow around a few of these administrators to see what they do all day and then figure out to whom they are related,” wrote one reader. (It wasn’t me, I swear…).

There are many people who worked to assemble these new sites, among them: Teresa Hanafin, Angela Nelson, Glenn Yoder, Marcia Dick, Dean Inouye, the zones copy desk and the staff on Bob Kempf’s product team. In addition to staffers whose work will appear on the sites, we are using free lance “Town Correspondents” to post blog items and conduct outreach in the communities. They are Kathryn Eident, Ben Terris, Lisa Crowley and Travis Andersen.

Several of you have asked about page views and about advertising support. We’re closing in on a half million page views this month from the Your Town sites. Ad sales are going reasonably well at this early date, and I’m assured that our sales people are looking for more.

David Dahl
Boston Globe Regional Editor
Boston.com/yourtown

3 thoughts on “Globe expands Your Town

  1. lkcape

    As The Globe focuses on their hyper-local on-line geegaws, they continue to lose their subscriber base.Wonder how many they lost today? I know of at least one. They tried to entice with a 25% off rate, but wouldn’t commit to how long it would stay there….Anyway, with the content loss to date, and the likely additional content loss in the near future, it is really questionable as to how much the remaining/future content may actually be worth.

  2. Dan Kennedy

    Ron: I would classify it as urban. Nyah, nyah. As a former resident of Medford, I would argue that Medford has as many suburban-style neighborhoods as Melrose.

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