Blogs » Your Advocate: an editor's blog » What news is happening on your street?


We're in beta, as Google would say, of a new feature on our website called "Your Street."

Our regular online readers probably have noticed the Google maps appearing at the bottom of stories. This geotagging, although not perfect, is designed to help readers see where news is happening.

Our digital team has taken this the next step by offering a mash-up map view of the news. By clicking on the "Your Street" link you'll see a map of the Crossroads containing thumbtacks linking to news in that area. By clicking on the link, you'll be taken to the full story. You also can zoom out of the Crossroads and scroll around the world to see Associated Press news from elsewhere.

This map view is meant to complement how you consume the news. Eventually, we'd like to be able to populate the map in such detail that you can gather lots of information about what's happening on or near your own street. This data wouldn't need to be limited to only news stories.

Zoom in your street now and let us know what you think. We realize the mapping software has some limitations, so we're learning as we go. We also have to decide regularly what one address makes the most sense for a story that might involve multiple locations or no specific location. For example, a story about Port Lavaca without a specific address will default to what the mapping software considers the city center.

I've always been fascinated by maps, so I find this new tool intriguing. We look forward to hearing your suggestions.