[development] wall street journal featuring drupal site!

ae2005 kae2005 at comcast.net
Thu Feb 2 01:41:56 UTC 2006

check this out!!!
today's wall street journal feature very prominently a drupal site
fresno famous.

anyone know her? suzi arnold

The FresnoFamous folks wouldn't discuss the dollars and cents of the
bail-bond ad. But Mr. Gillespie paid just $100 for 10,000 views of his
church's banner ad, currently the only one on the Greesnboro site. Based
on normal traffic patterns, those views should occur in about two weeks,
says Roch Smith Jr., Greensboro101's owner.

Mr. Smith, of course, projects that business will grow. But to the
extent that it does, competition will be ferocious.

Local newspapers of all stripes -- dailies, alternative weeklies and
weekly shoppers -- aren't likely to cede these community spaces without
a fight. And then there are the "aggregators," companies striving to
create a common software platform that can be used in many different
locales. Backfence.com5 is a venture capital-funded operation starting
out in the suburbs of Washington, D.C. YourHub.com6, owned by the Denver
Newspaper Agency, is already active in four states.

And then there is the question of what, if anything, the Googles and
Yahoos of the world might do. Indeed, Jarah Euston, the 26-year-old
former Wall Street bond analyst who founded FresnoFamous two years ago,
says that one of her biggest fears is MySpace, the youth-oriented
"social networking" site. There is a lot of information about events on
MySpace. Ms. Euston frets that it will one day become easily searchable
by ZIP Code, and thus compete with the calendar listings currently at
the heart of her business.

One indication that economies of scale will play their expected crucial
role in community journalism is that both Ms. Euston and Mr. Smith are
thinking of expanding, Ms. Euston to Modesto, another central California
town, and Mr. Smith to Syracuse, N.Y., where he found a simpatico
blogger. And both say they would welcome some way for small sites to
band together to attract national advertisers while still keeping their

So what about the advertisers? Mr. Gillespie says he was drawn to
Greensboro101 because he himself is an active blogger. Mr. Ramirez says
he was simply trying to help his family-owned business keep up with
changing times. (By the way, while most people's stereotype of a typical
bail-bond client is not someone reading blog posts, Mr. Ramirez says Web
surfers tend to skew young, and the young in turn tend to skew toward
getting into trouble.)

As for whether the ads have paid off, both men say it is too soon to

Community Web sites are clearly one of those economic spaces that are
"in play." It's hard not to root for the locally owned little guys, in
much the same way that most of us would prefer that local film buffs,
not Blockbuster, own the nearby video store.

You can find a list of many of community sites at cyberjournalist.net7.
I'm inclined to urge people, if they like their local site, to support
its advertisers. I'm just a little worried about how some Fresno readers
might take that advice.

Write to Lee Gomes at lee.gomes at wsj.com8
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