Monday, May 18, 2009

Cvillepedia & Charlottesville Tomorrow -Second Thoughts

Looks like I'm not the only one who thinks this is a good idea.

Last week I talked about the Cvillepedia the on-line open source free encyclopedia about the city of Charlottesville and surrounding Albermarle County. It was developed by Charlottesville Tomorrow as another informational asset concerned with the City of Charlottesville and Albermarle County, Virginia.

So what? Well, first off, it's a viable model for many localities. And secondly, I'm not the only one who thinks so. Jerry Del Colliano, in his recent Inside Music Media post "Life After Radio -- 8 New Ideas" said:
If you're a newsperson, writer, community affairs executive or interested in new ways to dispense information in a digital world ...

4. Pick a town or city and become the "news source" for it -- town meetings, crime, anything that goes on in that locale. Put it up on a website and, better yet, add an Apple app that people in that location can carry around on their phones to touch and connect with what's happening close to their homes in real-time. Monetize the app, the website and ancillary income streams that come from owning the franchise for Hoboken, New Jersey or Newport Beach, California or Ames, Iowa. Newspapers wouldn't do it -- they once did regional editions loaded with feature stories. Radio barely does any news. Own a town and get rich with your production, reporting, social networking and Internet skills.
Sound familiar? Charlottesville Tomorrow has the model; they're more than halfway towards creating a franchise that could easily be adopted by other locals (I don't know if that's their plan, but it's possible).

This could just as easily have been a website built by a radio station -- perhaps all-news WINA, which serves the Charlottesville market? It wasn't. Compare WINA's website to Charlottesville Tomorrow's. The difference is profound.

So how does your local radio or newspaper coverage measure up? And how would something like Del Colliano's online news source be received?

- Ralph

Day 43 of the WJMA Podwatch.<

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for talking about our cvillepedia project. We are looking forward to having a growing group of authors in the community that contribute to this hyper-local resource.

    A favor... one of the links above goes to a site that we are turning off in the next month ( The two URLs we advertise are as follows: (redirects to TypePad blog/News Center) and (the Wiki).

    Thanks! Brian Wheeler, Charlottesville Tomorrow