Local news becomes local action
On April 4th, around 2:30 AM a fire broke out on Brock St in the downtown section of Whitby, Ontario, a suburb of Toronto. The 100-year old heritage building was significantly damaged and several businesses in it and in adjoining buildings had to be shut down for weeks while an investigation was conducted and repairs made.
For most people this is just a local news story that quickly disappears, but to many in Whitby it was a crisis that needed action long after the headlines faded.
The residents of Whitby can use /brockst-fire to organize and coordinate a response. It would get immediate visibility due to its trending on the main localweb.is index, and could also serve as the focal point for other support efforts…like the GoFundMe campaign to help out Kake Kreations, a beloved bakery that had to shut its doors. Or for posting notices about town meetings from the planning committee and updates about the fire department investigation. It’s like a hashtag, but because it’s local and less noisy there is room for discussion and communication over time. It becomes the bridge from what was once just a local news story to a local action story.
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Image via Mehrdad Nazarahari/CBC