RE: WATPA: On-Line Newspaper

From: S. Cover <>
Date: Sat Jul 09 2005 - 00:28:54 EDT

The concept is already employed at different levels nationally. For
instance, GetLocalNews is owned by a fellow in California who has bought
thousands of local domain names across America and is looking to help people
set up local news websites. See
GetLocalNews currently operates, which is a rather
typical site of their network (not very well-developed with local content),
that is focused on a Florida community named Westchester.
Of course, the American Towns Network, based in CT is trying to do the same
thing in a number of upscale towns in Westchester and Fairfield. See
They've had mixed success in different communities, depending on who is
their primary salesperson and news contact in the community. Some of their
town sites are more actively supported than others. They allow non-profits
to have free pages on their site and have community calendars where anyone
can post events. Their email newsletters are sparsely populated though and
there is little actual news in them. One of their ebtter sites is
Though relatively unknown outside their areas, local community publishing is
thriving these days in Westchester. John Bailey has done an excellent job
of covering White Plains news with since 2000. There is
the fellow running (I think his name is Mike Pollack). He's
doing a very good job of coverning that town, with designs on Briarcliff
Manor and Croton as well. And there's Hezi Aris, who runs YT seems to be willing to publish anything, regardless
of whether it's local or not. YT is definitely on Mayor Amicone's
blacklist, as the site has a definite anti-establishment bias.
At, we must publish 100 or more community-based press
releases every month, but we don't offer interactive publishing at present.
We offered free blogs last year, but were not really happy with the
participation levels and have dropped them since. It seems that people who
want to blog have plenty of avenues to do so and a geographic relationship
with a reader is not a strong enough bond to impel readers to favor our site
over others. For the same reason, online forums would probably not work
well at our site either. We may try both again this fall, but I would not
expect much success with either.
Blogs and community publishing are only successful when you have someone
with the drive or compulsion to make it work. This is usually the editor or
manager of the website, who sees the niche market and seeks to fill it.
In general, I have found readers only become involved when they see you as
an avenue to push their own private agenda. In my past work with Scarsdale
Today, I would get plenty of submissions from people against development of
the downtown or against speeding on particular busy street or for a
community center, etc. It was never news per se, more advertorial for their
point of view.
I'd say Scoopt, the British online community publication you cite, really
won't get many newsworthy submissions at all. It will probably just get
news spam from readers pushing their own private agendas. Here in
Westchester, I can see a Scoopt-like site getting lots of anti-Indian Point,
anti-Tappan Zee Bridge, anti-Phil Amicone submissions and not much else.

S. Cover

Scarsdale Technologies: Changing The World One Computer At A Time
(914) 723-5645 <> <>


From: Norm Jacknis []
Sent: Friday, July 08, 2005 9:16 PM
Subject: WATPA: On-Line Newspaper

This -- -- is an interesting British website that
encourages people to create their own on-line newspaper. Do you think such
a site would work here?




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        Britain on Britain - a Scoopt Supplement

Britain on Britain is the Scoopt Supplement that allows you to make the
news. We're looking for all stories that affect 100 or more British people

* Do you have a story to tell about life in Britain today?

* Do you know about something that other people should know about?

* Do you need to blow the whistle?

If you are looking for a way to speak out, Britain on Britain is for you.
This is your chance to be a photojournalist!

What's in a story?

The subject can be a local or a national issue. It should be topical and can
be hard-hitting. It can be negative or positive. What matters most is that
your story is of interest to a wider audience and affects -- or will affect
-- the lives of at least 100 people in Britain.

Some ideas:

* An act of stunning corporate, local authority or governmental

* An act of stunning corporate, local authority or governmental

* Shocking health and safety standards in the workplace

* The inside story on a local action campaign

* Wildlife being destroyed by illicit fly-tipping

* An on-the-spot report of a scientific or medical breakthrough

* Lousy (or brilliant) disabled access

* A Darwin <> Awards contender caught in
the act

* The impact of the closure of a local factory or village post office

* A train or tube journey from hell

* Criminal behaviour going unreported or tolerated

But in fact just about anything can make a saleable story, so don't be bound
by these guidelines. Just think in terms of the stories you read in the
newspapers. Does your story demand to be told?

What to do now

Capture one or more photos that illustrate your story and write a brief
description of the subject matter. If we consider that your story has merit
and would interest a publisher, we'll follow it up with you directly. If
necessary, we can put a journalist on the case to research the facts and
interview the people involved. We will then endeavour to sell the story,
with photos, to the press. And of course we'll share the fee with you.*

We will also publish a selection of members' stories and photos here on the
Scoopt website.


* Join Scoopt if you haven't already done so

* Log in to the site

* Click the Upload Photos button

* Select Britain on Britain from the list of categories

* And send us your photo(s)

Then click here to <> email us your story
in around 100 words.

* NOTE: Normally, Scoopt pays you 50% of the fee when we sell a photo.
However, where we incur additional costs such as employing a professional
journalist, we'll pay you 50% of the fee after these expenses have been
deducted. We'll discuss this with you as we go along. The good news is that
we can normally get a significantly higher fee when selling a researched
story than when selling a photo alone.

we need your storeies now



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Received on Sat Jul 9 00:29:08 2005

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