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Editor’s Note: Encyclo has not been regularly updated since August 2014, so information posted here is likely to be out of date and may be no longer accurate. It’s best used as a snapshot of the media landscape at that point in time.

Outside.in is a company that aggregates and maps hyperlocal news. It was purchased by AOL in March 2011, reportedly for something under $10 million, so that its technology could be merged into the local site network Patch.

The company is based in Brooklyn and was launched in 2006 by Steven Berlin Johnson, Cory Forsyth, and John Geraci around an idea that local news should be organized spatially, and first and foremost by neighborhood. It went live a year later.

Outside.in publishes no original content, but instead aggregates local articles and blog posts based on their geographical cues.

The company licenses its feeds to larger news sites such as CNN.com, NBC Local Media, The Washington Post, and McClatchy newspapers. In 2009, it launched a platform allowing publishers to create and edit their own neighborhood-level pages of aggregated news, which more than 100 media companies have used. In 2010, it announced a partnership with the Journal Register Company to create a hyperlocal news and ad portal in Philadelphia. Outside.in’s CEO, Mark Josephson, has said the site “exists to drive traffic to and support local media sites.”

The company has also released tools to allow local bloggers to create their own news maps, opened its API, and released a location-based iPhone app.

Outside.in raised more than $14 million in funding as an independent company, including investment from CNN. It charges publishers to use its service, though most of its revenue comes from advertising.

Peers, allies, & competitors:
Recent Nieman Lab coverage:
March 11, 2011 / Mark Coddington
This Week in Review: NPR at a crossroads, hyperlocal’s personal issue, and keeping comments real — Every Friday, Mark Coddington sums up the week’s top stories about the future of news. This week: Turmoil at NPR and accusations of an overreaction; AOL dials up Outside.in and announces layoffs; TechCrunch tries Faceb...
March 10, 2011 / Ken Doctor
The newsonomics of AOL/Patch buying Outside.in — There are two ways to be local, we've learned. You can create local news, as newspapers, TV, and some radio stations — and more recently, tens of thousands of bloggers — have done. Or you can aggregate local, sorting...
Sept. 30, 2010 / Ken Doctor
The Newsonomics of journalistic star power — [Each week, our friend Ken Doctor — author of Newsonomics and longtime watcher of the business side of digital news — writes about the economics of the news business for the Lab.] Maybe it’s a trend, or maybe i...
Sept. 8, 2010 / Kimberley Isbell
What’s the law around aggregating news online? A Harvard Law report on the risks and the best practices — [So much of the web is built around aggregation — gathering together interesting and useful things from around the Internet and presenting them in new ways to an audience. It’s the foundation of blogging and soci...
July 30, 2009 / Ben Cohen
In Ann Arbor, designing a news site that doesn’t look like a news site — The first thing I noticed on AnnArbor.com is, well, the first thing I was supposed to notice. The bare home page doesn’t even try to do the traditional newspaper editor’s job of defining which stories are the...

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Primary author: Mark Coddington. Main text last updated: May 20, 2011.
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The Nieman Journalism Lab is a collaborative attempt to figure out how quality journalism can survive and thrive in the Internet age.
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