The promise or peril of neighborhood listserves

Are you being listserved?(Financial Times, 5/11/07, Holly Yeager) on the social capital impact of listserves, including quotes from Keith Hampton about their general effectiveness.  [Results from Keith’s e-neighbors experiment on this topic will be printed in Neighborhoods in the Network Society: The e-Neighbors Study. (forthcoming). Information, Communication and Society 10(5). ]

For sure, localized electronic networks are usually more powerful than geographically-distant e-networks since they are more likely to be supplemented by or buttressed by real face-to-face encounters.  That said, the story highlights one listserve disaster in NYC where the building’s residents used e-mail as an excuse to say highly uncivil things to their neighbors that they would never say face-to-face.

What is your experience? 

If you’re interested in starting a neighborhood listserve, i-neighbors is one way of doing this.


2 responses to “The promise or peril of neighborhood listserves

  1. While not technically a listserv, at SCI we distribute weekly civic enewsletters in each of our 3 local communities, reaching about 2,500 residents. Roughly 3/4 responding to our surveys say they are more civically active and feel more connected to their community as a result.

  2. Really nice site you have here. I’ve been reading for a while but this post made me want to say 2 thumbs up. Keep up the great work

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