Over the past few years a number of citizen journalism sites have popped up to serve Cecil County readers. The weblogs in this underserved media market try to fill niches by focusing on specific topics such as county and regional politics, municipal government or arts, culture and history. The better ones have excellent quality and provide readers with insightful or opinionated original pieces as they fill gaps in local coverage. Others just occupy space in the obscure fog of the Internet as they reprint a few stale press releases that come their way.
As the amount of local content grows yearly, we were pleased to discover a new product, the Horizon Blog. After reading Dan Meadows’ introductory statement, our first reaction is that this will be a great product that’ll help bring valued local content to readers. The publisher is a professional writer, who plans to leverage the power of everyday citizens to push news in real time and create sort of a public commons, a place to go for news that moves far too fast for legacy media.
This sounds like a successful business model to us and something we need in Cecil County. Provide a place to find citizen journalism, local news and events and have the guiding hand of a professional journalist as you cover the beat. Couple that with a news portal that has professionally crafted articles and you’re on to something. There’s synergy and efficiency there when you couple those elements with 21st century technology.
Though it’s in the formative stage, we think the Horizon is headed in the right direction. We’re going to link to it as it fills the gap in local coverage created as publishers controlling legacy media pull back on the news room resources.