March 4, 2010
byat 3:38 PM
Freedom of the press is limited to those who own one
We launched our commentary system at the end of 2005, by giving people not only the ability to comment on the headlines we aggregated here at Topix, but also the opportunity to come forward with original subject matter, and contribute to subject and local based forums.
I remember telling the dev team that I would buy them dinner at the French Laundry if we got to 1,000 comments a day. Well, flash forward to today and we're averaging over 125,000 comments a day (yes, the dev team ate well early on in this process).
And today, we turned the commentometer over at 100,000,000
I'll update with the details shortly. We're toying around with a badge to show our appreciation, as well.
Our comments provide a place for people to engage around local news where no one else provides it. Especially in towns where there is no local newspaper, we are a place to talk about what’s going on there. And even in places like Paris Texas, which have a fine local newspaper, our commenters are a source of news stories.
There has been a whole lot of hand wringing about how "reporting is vanishing", with the world becoming "darker and uglier" as a result. To this I reply check out the local news in Manchester Kentucky, and the 1300+ comments about a local recycling plant. Tell those people that there's no local coverage. We provide a forum for this disucssion of the people, people by the people and for the people.
Finally, thanks to all the you who participate in our forums, we appreciate it.
Techcrunch covered this here