AOL brings “Patch” to New Hampshire in preparation for 2012 Presidential Election
On May 4th, AOL launched its newest local news website called Patch. Patch is a platform to discuss the impact of national and state issues in your hometown. Five to ten bloggers are recruited for each location to report on local government and school board issues as well as sporting and social events in the area. Patch’s social responsibility program called “Give 5” donates 5% of their ad space to charitable organizations and requires employees to volunteer 5 days of the year.
AOL might face a hurdle with its goal to recruit 8000 unpaid bloggers to report the news for each community. Having thus far invested $115 million in the implementation of Patch; AOL has tightened the purse strings when it comes to reporter wages.
Yesterday AOL added 33 new sites to the list of 800 communities. With a focus on the upcoming 2012 presidential campaign, these 33 locations are concentrated in the first three states to hold primary elections: New Hampshire, Iowa and South Carolina. “By expanding to key primary states, Patch positions itself squarely on the front lines of the presidential campaign and will be able to deliver a real-time snapshot of how pivotal communities are reacting to candidates – as well as immediate feedback on whether the issues that matter most to these towns are being addressed” says AOL Huffington Post Media Group President, Arianna Huffington. New Hampshire communities to be available on Patch are: Amherst, Bedford, Concord, Exeter, Hampton-North Hampton, Merrimack, Nashua, Portsmouth, Salem and Windham.