Alameda Island, where I live, is one of the more wired neighborhoods in the Bay Area. This morning I whipped off a quick email while waiting for the bus by jumping on the open wireless connection at the Mexican place, La Pinata, across the street. They sell burritos and they’ve got high-speed internet!
As many who work in the online business have found, I’ve stopped
watching television or reading the national dailies for my news fix and
now rely pretty much on my RSS reader and occasional web site to push
me the news of the day. Yet, despite the wireless and despite all the local resources you can find online, I still love the fact that this community of 70,000 can support two local papers. The Alameda Journal (pictured) is a Knight-Ridder publication and gets whipped onto our front door step twice a week and the Alameda Sun makes it once a week.
There is something about a local rag that just fits. Nothing like walking out to catch the bus, stooping down to scoop up the paper and seeing your local electrician on the cover. Taking the ride into the city you can read how the high school soccer team did over the weekend and that your neighbor’s daughter scored a goal, browse the police blotter and see that a few more cars were broken into over on the other side of Fernside, then note that the Foote’s old house sold for over $750k. This is just stuff you wouldn’t spend the time looking for online – it’s just works better in print.
It’s all advertising supported – I don’t think I’d pay for a subscription – but I will say that when I’m looking for something to do or for a local service, the paper is a resource that I still use right next to the yellow pages.