If you were wondering how likely it is that news curation may become a key strategy for offering quality local news, you should check out this three-year old project called The Breaking News Network.
BNN, founded by Pat Kitano, already covers 350 cities worldwide by curating the most interesting local news stories from indigenous blogs and RSS feeds and having a unique focus on supporting community voices and interests.
BNN, in its own words is an active, community-sourced and locally driven information network, that uses curation to provide just-in-time relevant info and news to its communities.
From the official site: "The Breaking News Network delivers social media sourced news and information to over 350 cities and neighborhoods worldwide.
We’re unique to local publishing because we curate and publish the most interesting media and blog feeds in each city (that means less petty crime and accidents, more events, opinions and commentary) to create an aggregate real time ticker tape of literally everything happening in a city.
Every city’s WordPress based website (example: BreakingSFNews.com) broadcasts more than just the usual daily news; it curates news by category: Things to Do, Sports, Food, Culture, etc. so users can find breaking news by topic of interest.
We utilize the curation and presentation tools by Rebelmouse to display content in a visual format.
One interesting aspect of The Breaking News Network is its strategic positioning, throughout all of its instances, as a collector and amplifier for the news coming from relevant local institutions and communities providing them with extra visibility and a very relevant context to reach out to interested people.
From Journalisaccelerator.com: "When BNN was launched three years ago to give voice to community causes, Kitano brought a unique knowledge from early experiments using Twitter (2006 – 2009) and social media to develop hyperlocal community information networks for the real estate market.
Focusing on social at the outset, Kitano was “cobbling together” segmented lists on Twitter before Twitter had even created “lists.” (For context, Twitter launched in July of 2006.)
Kitano sees BNN providing a shared social channel – one community, one voice, one cause at a time – with promise of doing good for others by supporting civic groups, local causes and arts organizations."
Here, in more detail, some of the community support they provide: "We provide free access for local institutions to our 350+ Twitter feeds via our unique Community Retweet Program.
We also provide this access to local politicians and local media so they can broadcast their most important messages to our communities.
We create national campaigns and build brand advocate networks for good causes.
SF Breaking News example: http://thebreakingnewsnetwork.com/
Review by Journalism Accelerator: http://bit.ly/JATBNN
More info: http://thebreakingnewsnetwork.com/
City directory: http://thebreakingnewsnetwork.com/city-directory/