The New York Times Shutters The Local: New Jersey

Despite the Garden State’s meteoric rise in pop culture currency, The New York Times has folded its hyperlocal New Jersey site. Like the paper’s locally-focused project in Brooklyn, the site was called “The Local.”

After running for a little over a year, The Local published the following:

More than a year and a half ago The New York Times set out on an experiment in hyperlocal and collaborative journalism. We devoted two full-time reporters to the effort, as well as an editor and a number of support and advisory staff journalists. And we picked two fascinating and vibrant communities to launch our little enterprise.

From the beginning, we described this as a pilot, a test, an experiment, because we knew that our path in community journalism couldn’t be paved with sites staffed by full-time New York Times journalists. Nevertheless we were committed to pursuing the journalistic lessons to be found in web-based community coverage, and made this an editorial priority.

The site will be taken over by another New Jersey-based site, Baristanet. And they could not be more pleased:

We’re thrilled that the Times has passed their hyperlocal baton to us and we will run with it. First and foremost, we are your local homegrown online community. And to that end, we are bringing these new towns into an expanded “Baristaville” by staying local. Journalist and Maplewood resident Jolie Solomon joins the Baristanet team along with community contributors from Maplewood, South Orange and Millburn.

Whatever. I blame Snookie.