EveryBlock, a website that aggregated local news, has suddenly announced that it “has closed its doors.”
Users of the site were greeted to an unexpected farewell message Thursday morning via email or upon logging in to the site. EveryBlock also linked to its goodbye blog on Twitter, saying “Farewell, neighbors.”
“Thanks for the contributions, for the questions, and for allowing us to connect you to each other, in many cases to make great things happen in your community,” the message reads. “Along the way, we hope we’ve helped you be a better neighbor.”
EveryBlock presented the news it aggregated based off of the geographical location of the story’s content. Despite that innovative approach, the site couldn’t weather the challenging times currently faced by the news industry.
The start-up news site was acquired in 2009 by MSNBC Digital Network, which NBC took full ownership of in 2011.
In a note sent to staff Thursday, NBC News’ Chief Digital Officer Vivian Schiller said the decision to close EveryBlock was difficult but the site didn’t fit with NBC News’ portfolio.
“As we move forward, I want us to be thoughtful about how we invest, taking a hard look at where we can and should win, and how we deploy the resources to make it happen,” Schiller said.
[Updated 10:30 a.m. PST, Feb. 7: Despite initially saying all of EveryBlock’s staff would leave NBC, the media company is now saying that it is working with individual staffers to see if “there are other roles for them inside NBCU.”]
“I’d like to thank [EveryBlock President] Brian Addison and his team for all of the great work they have done with the site -- providing an engaging user experience and an opportunity for people to connect with their neighbors and share hyper-local news and information,” Schiller said.