Friday, September 25, 2009

Go west, young man

Eyes wider than my stomach.

I was so hungry to pick and pan online newspaper sites that I started in Ontario because it had the most in Canada. Why couldn’t I pick Nunavut?

As I leave the trillium state, I have a better sense of how far many newspapers have come to improve their digital product and social media presence, and how much farther many of them have to go.

The large urban dailies have the most to lose if they don’t stay competitive. I’m watching how they produce videos and audio, what type of unique “hyperlocal” ideas they go after, their use of blogs, updating their websites and how they interact with the public. They’re the leaders.

The bane of my professional existence is online newspapers that fill their website with wire copy. That cheat worked ages ago and has no place in a progressive electronic product. Some small-market websites cheat by refreshing old stories so they look like they’ve been recently posted.

I was impressed with what some smaller markets are able to achieve with live blogging and active use of social media. The Timmins Daily Press has a section for local bands, but there have only been three takers and it hasn’t been updated in a couple of years. The only one in the north that tried, but a lost opportunity.

I'm spinning the wheel and heading to oil sands country next to check out Alberta online newspapers. Are they rich like their economy? Or inflated like their housing prices?

The Hyper Journalist



  1. Make a pitstop on Winnipeg and check out the local news sites.

  2. It is abundantly clear the Winnipeg Freep is ahead of the online game. Stop rubbing it in. I'm in the process of firing my travel agent and will head to The Peg in the coming days.