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Reading: One Every Two Minutes’: assessing the scale of hyperlocal publishing in the UK

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One Every Two Minutes’: assessing the scale of hyperlocal publishing in the UK

Author:

David Harte

Birmingham City UniversityNone
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Abstract

Given that ‘hyperlocal’ publishing on the Internet is now attracting the attention of policymakers (Ofcom 2012), investors (Radcliffe 2012) and researchers (such as Metzgar et al. 2011) it seems timely to assess the scale of activity of this emerging sector in the UK. This paper reports on research completed as part of the ‘Media, Community and the Creative Citizen’ project on behalf of the UK communications regulator Ofcom and outlines the number of active hyperlocal websites and the volume and frequency of stories they produce. Such websites are, by and large, independent of mainstream media organisations and their intended audience is from a specific, often small, geographic area. The paper reflects on issues in developing a clear definition of what constitutes a hyperlocal website and in conclusion finds that whilst the challenge they pose to the local press might be overstated, their collective output and continued growth is of a scale that warrants continued interest from regulators concerned about the plurality of news sources that citizens are exposed to in their localities. The research goes some way towards identifying a clear baseline against which the further growth of the dynamic nature of this emerging sector can be measured.
How to Cite: Harte, D., (2013). One Every Two Minutes’: assessing the scale of hyperlocal publishing in the UK. JOMEC Journal. (3), p.None. DOI: http://doi.org/10.18573/j.2013.10240
Published on 01 Jun 2013.
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