Yesterday Numenius gave me the heads up the Lisa Williams went live with her directory of place blogs at placeblogger.com. Congratulations, Lisa!
It’s quite an accomplishment to pull something like this together, an effort I appreciate because I attempted something similar earlier this summer and gave up once I remembered that I hadn’t finished my dissertation (funny how that slips my mind sometimes). What I find interesting is that Lisa and I were developing place blogging directories using Drupal at the same time while living a few miles apart in the Boston area but without having met each other. By July I had developed and abandoned my revised Ecotone site at placeblogging.com and by early August Lisa had bet a colleague that she could collect 1000 place blogs from around the country. I don’t know if she’s reached the 1000 mark yet or not, but she must be close, and placeblogger.com promises to be a useful showcase for this genre of blogging.
Lisa’s definition of place blogs is a useful one:
A placeblog is an act of sustained attention to a particular place over time
It can be done by one person, a defined group of people, or in a way that’s open to community contribution
It’s not a newspaper, though it may contain random acts of journalism
It’s about the lived experience of a place
Lisa has spoken a couple of times at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard, and you can listen to her discuss the project by visiting the Berkman archives.