Six months ago, Brad Rourke and Cindy Cotte Griffiths moved Rockville Central from a standalone web site to Facebook to both go where most of their readers were and to allow for more convenient interaction among readers. Founded in June 2007, within a couple years Rockville Central had become one of the top five local blogs in Maryland, but now that it’s moved entirely and exclusively to Facebook, how has it fared?
The move to Facebook has generated national attention, including the Washington Post, Huffington Post, Poynter, Media Bistro, and the Neiman Journalism Lab at Harvard University. The articles tend to be struck by the “Facebook exclusive” venture and it’s potential as a model for other community news organizations (e.g., “Industry leaders and media analysts say news organizations have not yet fully exploited Facebook for its total worth,” noted the Washington Post). On the other hand, reader comments often raised concerns about Continue reading →
In addition to Rockville Central and Rockville Living, Rockville Patch provides another online source of news and information about our fair city. Patch is based in New York City and operates throughout the country, working in communities of 15-100K population that are “underserved by media and would benefit by having access to local news and information about government, schools and business”. Each “Patch” is run by professional editors, writers, photographers, and videographers who live in or near the communities they serve and for the Rockville version includes nearly two dozen editors and contributors, including Sean Sedam, Lauren Sausser, Jillian Badanes, and Nathan Carrick (in case you run into them at an event). They’ve been operating in Rockville since October 2010 and recent posts include a review of Zio’s Restaurant, a video on the Comptroller’s visit to Best Buy to promote Maryland’s tax-free weekend, and images from around town. It seems to have already attracted the attention of the usual online community activists, including Temperance Blalock, Theresa Defino, and Joe Jordan (on Red Gate Golf Course, no surprise), so you’ll see some familiar faces.