The article primarily focuses on VoiceofSanDiego.org, one of the first online papers to sprout up following newsroom cuts at more traditional dailies across the nation.
As I reported back in May 2007, the Beacon (nee St. Louis Platform) is in many ways modeled off the San Diego Web site. It's staffed with former writers and editors from the daily paper and operates on a non-profit model that depends on donations from the public.
The Times reports that the number of fledgling sites like the Beacon now spans from Seattle to New Haven, Conn. Recently these ventures began talks on forming an association that could help them win national advertising and financial grants.
The Times also reports that Beacon can get as many as 200,000 visitors a month -- though I'm not sure where they got that information. Data compiled by Internet rating service Quancast indicates that while the Beacon's readership is growing, it currently averages just 261 visitors per month.
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