These are just three of many blogs that have sprouted up in the last few years covering localities. These are the ones that I am connected to because they cover areas I care about because I live there or have lived there.
1. EVGrieve. A super-snarky blog, written by an anonymous person whose name is EVGrieve. I have no idea who it is. But in two years he or she has created a network of people in the East Village who contribute. If there's a fire in the middle of the night, they have pictures in the morning. That's sort of the benchmark for hyperlocal. It's very very pro-east-village, they don't like bar noise (a huge problem here) and are constantly railing against gentrification. But it's very opinionated and I love it. They do about 5 posts a day, wish they did more. I wrote a piece for them that hasn't run yet. Grrr. (Okay a little snark back atcha.)
And of all the East Village pics I've taken this is the one I most wish had appeared in EVGrieve.
2. Berkeleyside. It's a long story but I helped found this one when I lived in Berkeley, but it has since changed its name and has grown a million percent, and most important -- has found itself. Seriously, I'm not kidding. It feels somehow "real." Very different from #1, written by pro freelancers who live in Berkeley. These are mature people, with a large view of the world, and are thinking not only in terms of reporting on the news of Berkeley, but also want to develop business in Berkeley's slumping economy. Get this -- on Jan 24 they're having a local business conference. They're doing a wonderful job with no money, just vision and passion. Of the three I think it looks the best. Like EVGrieve, they are slowly extending their reach into the community for photos and copy.
3. LEV which stands for Local East Village, a joint effort betw NYU and the NY Times. It's in the part of NYU where I have my current fellowship. I think they've done a good job. You can see they cover mostly the same business as EVGrieve, after all they are covering the same locality. But they do it with an educational flavor and minus the attitude. Both approaches are, of course, completely valid.