Bettering Plainfield with the facts since 2005

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Sneak peek of Courier's new Plainfield 'microsite'

Courier's new Plainfield 'microsite'.
Got a Google internet alert that gives a sneak peek of the Courier's new website highlighting Plainfield.

Plainfield has been added to a growing list of communities that Gannett New Jersey is outfitting with their own individually tailored websites (see Plainfield's here) or 'microsites'.

While Courier reporter Mark Spivey had said a couple of months ago that the project was under way, I had no idea it was so far along until the Google alert arrived in my inbox.

The site sports all the Courier's Plainfield-related news stories, plus photo galleries and links to Plainfield websites and blogs (including the usual suspects), as well as a Twitter feed and a 'flyerboard' (a bulletin board for community flyers; seems to be empty at present).

And, of course, ads.

Gannett's papers, along with every other newspaper in the country -- including the Ledger, whose advertising income is down yet again, prompting another buyout -- are trying to figure out how to make money online.

The Courier, I am told, does make money off its online advertising and a robust online readership.

One of the things that market research has shown the newspapers, though, is that readers have an insatiable interest in local news (and, judging from the Ledger's community forums, trash).

Map shows current roster of microsites.
Gannett's 18 (so far) 'InJersey' sites seem intended to capitalize on this.

What does this mean for the Plainfield blogs?

Since we're not in competition with the Courier, the new website's links should garner even more readers for Plainfield's very active blog community.

As for my CLIPS blog, which aggregates news about Plainfield from many sources, the Courier included, I'm expecting continued growth in readership, since it's likely to be snowcone-time-in-Hades before Gannett decides to put links up to its competitor's stories.

Be sure to check out the new 'microsite' and Mark Spivey's accompanying (and punningly named) new blog 'In the Field' (see here).

-- Dan Damon [follow]

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Anonymous said...

Dan,you have to realize that the Courier has only one motive . . .MONEY!
That is why I would contact you with a story or some info, before I would ever contact the Courier or the Ledger. I truly question the Courier News' beat reporter as to his ethics and motives!
I've had dealings with him in the past, and the reults were very disappointing, to say the least!


Anonymous said...

Mark Spivey is NOT a reporter. He is basically a lazy, naive hired gun that is hell bent on painted a negative image of Plainfield. He does little to no research on his stories, relies on biased sources and basically 'cuts and 'pastes' his articles.

He has exposed the Courier for what it is" tabloid journalism.

Dan, I would take you, Bernice, Maria, and even Dr. Yood's account of an issue before Mark Spivey and the Courier. You guys at least do your homework.

Dan said...

@ 7:53 AM -- You're being unkind and unfair to Spivey. He works the beat very hard, ccontending with a Mayor who often "does not return phone calls by press time'.

He covers everything and talks to anyone. But the rules for the mainstream media are somewhat different than for bloggers.

Bernice blogs, but writes as a reporter would, mostly (it's in the blood, I think).

Oldoc, Maria and I can beat dead horses all we want, by the rules of the game Mark has to look on both sides of the horse, dead or not.

Plainfield would be a much less well-informed community without Mark.

Anonymous said...

Dan dont cut the bloggers short. Spivey has resported on stories that you guys blogged on days and weeks earlier.

I agree with 7:53. I am not impressed with the Courier or Spivey and cancelled my subscription months ago.

I dont have a problem with informing the public. But at leat do it in a fair way. Their stories seem like major spin to me.