If you have never played with the real-estate website Zillow, you can kiss the rest of your afternoon goodbye. You will soon find yourself scrolling down your virtual block, seeing what all your neighbors paid for their homes.
Zillow just announced some interesting new functionality to their site, centered around Neighborhood pages.
John Cook is calling this their foray into >citizen journalism:
“The idea is that people will not only visit Zillow to learn about homes, but — one could imagine — local restaurants, recent crimes or the history of the neighborhood. With this feature, you could also see Zillow moving down the path of trying to link people together in certain neighborhoods to share a lawnmower, sell a grill, host a fundraiser or, perhaps, find a date. And if that occurs, the real estate information and Zestimates offered by Zillow today might just be a Trojan horse into other lucrative advertising markets.”
Perhaps that is where hyperlocal news site Backfence went wrong. Is the key to building hyperlocal and citizen journalism content, to integrate it with must-have tools and functionality?