Why your newspaper should fear topix.net

March 15, 2004

Because Topix has a news search engine that sorts by zip code. I found stories from my current back yard and a former one.

Of course Topix is hoping to target ads to go with these searches, just like Google, Yahoo and all the others.

This is what they mean by disruptive technology. Here’s a Merc story on Topix.

5 Responses to Why your newspaper should fear topix.net

  1. Rich Boudet on March 15, 2004 at 1:27 pm

    I searched Topix for one of my regular interests – a particular new car – and found four articles. Google News regularly gives me more like 20.
    And “local” news? I found my city included stories from TV stations and newspapers 100 miles away.
    As a search engine, it’s clunky and it’s got no brand identity. Goodbye.

  2. tom on March 15, 2004 at 1:50 pm

    Don’t those strike you as fixable flaws?
    People thought Windows 3.0 was a total piece of crap.

  3. bodayguy on March 15, 2004 at 3:53 pm

    Sorry, that was a knee-jerk reaction.
    I’m just tired a guys coming up with “algorithms” and expecting to make a fortune on the internet off OUR content.
    At least Google pretends to be altruistic.

  4. tom on March 15, 2004 at 3:58 pm

    Occurred to me that paid subscriptions would kill these algorithm-based ventures.
    The problem since, oh, 1995 has been publishers craving hit count to the exclusion of common sense. If your stuff is unique it shouldn’t be given away.
    But they’ll relearn that soon enough.

  5. Rich Boudet on March 16, 2004 at 9:08 pm

    Funny, just now Google says it’s launching http://www.local.google.com where you can search by zip code.