For a long time there’s been promise that location in real space will have a greater and greater impact on what we see on the Internet. And to some extent that’s true — there’s geo-targeted advertising and some sites have content tailored to your location. But to a great extent you still have to go out and find content relevant to your area. Placeblogger.com ( http://www.placeblogger.com ) is a directory of placeblogs — that is, blogs that are focused on the happenings/news/culture of a particular area, a pretty focused area.
The front page has pointers to featured blogs as well as recent headlines from blogs in the directory. The search engine is in the right column. You can browse by location (country/state) or search by keyword. The directory is dominated by US locations but there are other countries available too. I did a keyword search for news and got a three-tabbed search result that provided content results from the Web site first. The third tab was for location blogs and allowed me to search within x miles of a zip code or country.
Placeblogs have their own pages. There’s one called Streatham whose page is at http://www.placeblogger.com/placeblog/streatham . The page has information on the blog itself (URL, a small map) and pointers to the last couple of blog postings with excerpts. There’s also a place for visitors to comment on the blog (in this case, the comments were, “What’s the deal with that map? London and Newcastle are nowhere near each other!”)
The directory also has a spot for you to add your own placeblog, a discussion group (hosted by Google Groups), and a blog (Placeblogger blog content is also on the front page of the site.)
One note — I don’t know if Placeblogger.com got Slashdotted or Dugg or what — but I did have a hard time connecting to the site sometimes. I’d be browsing through the listings and suddenly everything would just time out. I wasn’t looking at it at a particularly busy time of day. There’s interesting material here but you’ll need some patience to get to it.