EveryBlock, the Holovaty-founded, Knight-funded, MSNBC.com-purchased neighborhood news-and-data site, updated its iPhone app today to make it easier for people to post questions, photos, or other info from their phone. That fits in well with their 2011 relaunch aimed at moving EveryBlock “from a one-way news feed to a two-way community platform.”
And it’s getting some promotion:
To support the launch of the new application, EveryBlock will run ads in Chicago bus shelters and New York subway stations throughout the month of May. The advertisement bears the headline, “EveryBlock: Fit your neighborhood into your pocket.”
Selfishly, I hope that the move to UGC makes it easier for them to expand beyond their 16 cities: Bostonians one mile from my house get EveryBlock, but here in Cambridge (and any other Boston suburb), we got zilch. (A bit more on the launch here from Appolicious’ Brad Spirrison.)
Ars Technica’s Venkat Balasubramani and Eric Goldman note the case of Bland v. Roberts, where three sheriff’s department workers argue they were fired because they had “liked” the Facebook page of their boss’ electoral opponent. The court says a Facebook like does not qualify as protected First Amendment speech:
It is the court’s conclusion that merely “liking” a Facebook page is insufficient speech to merit constitutional protection. In cases where courts have found that constitutional speech protections extended to Facebook posts, actual statements existed within the record.
First Amendment jurisprudence, of course, has held that many non-verbal, non-written acts qualify for protected status (memorably flag burning).
The HuffPo cofounder and Buzzfeed expansionist tells paidContent you shouldn’t bother waiting for banner ads to be your digital-revenue salvation, and that socially attuned advertising is the new hotness:
So what will the online advertising industry look like when it catches up to the new paradigm? One possibility can be found in Buzzfeed’s own office where a creative team works with the site’s advertisers to help make their content as social as possible.
On the Buzzfeed site, ads are seeded in the stream of stories and are supposed to be appealing in the same ways as the site’s native content. This is consistent with Peretti’s mantra that a publisher should ensure the ad type is native to the platform (advertorials in print newspapers, for instance).