Berkeleyside is the independent, award-winning local news site in Berkeley, Calif. covering news in Berkeley and the East Bay. Founded in 2009 by three professional journalists: Tracey Taylor, Lance Knobel and Frances Dinkelspiel. Topics: Local news, crime, business, arts, food etc. Revenue: Advertising, membership, events.
Tracey K. Taylor, Lance Knobel, Frances Dinkelspiel
We have high reader engagement through the site — we average 300 comments a day — and through social media. We break news on Twitter (where we have 61K followers in a city of 120,000) and live-tweet City Council and School Board meetings. Facebook allows us to disseminate our stories more widely, we have a closed Facebook group for our members, and we occasionally use Facebook Live to cover events live or to do live AMAs. We also engage directly with readers face to face at our events.
The major challenge is making enough from advertising and membership and other sources to have a sustainable business model.
Berkeleyside: The Nimble Hyperlocal News Site is Winning Awards and Attracting Eyeballs: http://alumni.berkeley.edu/california-magazine/winter-2015-breaking-news/berkeleyside-nimble-hyperlocal-news-site-winning
Indie Local News Sites See Potential in Membership Programs: http://www.lionpublishers.com/news/report/082715_membership_programs/
Review of day one of Berkeleyside's Uncharted Festival 2015: http://alumni.berkeley.edu/california-magazine/just-in/2015-10-17/want-justice-system-really-works-all-panelists-say-make