As mentioned in the podcast and on TechCrunch this two person team have expanded from their beginnings as PerthNorg (which I posted back in Jan) to other Australian Capital cities, and they plan to take on the world.
They even have a brilliantly layed out Election07 topic page.
Just a recap a Norg is a citizen journalism type of site where you register a profile, from there you can post your own stories or write a blurb and link to a story, photo’s, video, just choose a category for your story. It reminds me of a news version of CommonGate, as you don’t have your own blog with it’s own name, well you kind of have a blog but it’s more a profile where all your posts can be seen (as well as a feed), your posts can also be seen on the category page you file it in (can’t remember if they also have tags).
There is also an active user ladder: Cadet, Level 1-5 Journalist, Top Level Journalist…not sure if this is based on frequency of posts, most commented or voted, but I like the idea of a type of authority and seriousness.
So this is an entirely user generated news site, I wonder in the future if there will be any resident blogs (actually I noticed they do eg. PerthMusic)
Anyway the homepage looks great, you have: Top News, Just In, Top Picture, Recent Comments…people can also vote for a story.
The podcast also mentions that you could have a Norg for the enterprise and education sectors…this isn’t quite an enterprise social network, but it is multi-user blogging, with a focus just on “news” not general stuff like social networks or usual blogs. But imagine the news part of a global companies intranet being a Norg, that’s just awesome.
A few other thoughts I had that was also mentioned in the podcast is mobile interaction, posting would be easy enough, even sending text, photo, video by email, but viewing a mobile version is a hard game. Not long ago when Australian footballer Ben Cousins was arrested it happened a couple of metres outside my work, I noticed this as I was walking to my car…this would of been an opportunity to capture some video or photo’s, write a blurb and post it to PerthNorg as it happens.
Once they are mobile, presence news would be a good feature (ala Twitter), being able to post a 140 character story by SMS.
A good idea to drive participation is competition’s or encouraging young journalists to go out on their local streets and do video interviews, etc…I’m not a journalist type person, but there a a cool bunch of skateboarders on my walk home that have actually got great moves, they band together in the local carpark. I read in the local paper about a skate competition in a near by suburb, this would be an ideal oppotunity to do a feature. This sort of thing might be bordering on current affairs or magazine type features, but it generates interest and has a stickiness value.
For more here is an interview with Bronwen Clune that also has a link to a newspaper article.
Other similar sites:
Change.Org (a topic based Cit J site on social activism)
There was mention to bring back a more happening Classifieds section, I’d love to see this, especially a job hunting section. insiderPages and Yelp are a more general version, but a localised version would be great, as they mention in the podcast so far no-one in Australia has done this seriously. The only competition I see so far is, Loconut, the Perth local social network (kind of like a Facebook for Perth). This is kind of what Norg does, but is not focused on news, and more focused on community social networking, great for business and local community information…others are OnMyCity, Smalltown, BackFence, Baristanet, WickedLocal and H2otown.
[ADDED 23/11/07: Now get updates on latest news items via Twitter]
[ADDED 5/06/08: Roundup : EveryBlock, Nouri.sh, Twiddla, LinkBunch, PdfMeNot]