Different from a newspaper, however, which is written by a set of journalists who are generally experienced in writing and most often not still in high school, Patch.com is an opportunity for any well-writing member of a community to have a place to publish their writing--and it's all online, which opens it up to things like video and increased interaction between writer and audience. There is, of course, selectivity in order to maintain a good standard of writing, but I've only ever had one article published and have never gone to school to study journalism--or even taken a journalism class, for that matter--and I've been asked to contribute. My blog is a place where Marnette can see how I write and what I like to write about (take note, writers--having a blog is an excellent way to make opportunities for yourself in the writing or journalism world). Like I said, contributors to this site are able to make their column or posts what they want it to be. Since I'm a teenager and I'm pretty involved in my community, I could see any potential posts I write being about activities that young people are participating in here in Pleasanton. Environmental awareness will probably find its way in there, too :-)
I'm very excited to learn more about the site as it is being developed and to have the opportunity to contribute to a website about the place that I've lived my entire life. PleasantonPatch will certainly not the be first of its kind on the web. Patch.com already has several websites for places in New Jersey, Connecticut and New York. Pleasanton's will be launched in April, but the nearby town of Danville's will be launched in a couple weeks. Other places in the area have websites in the works.
The word "patch" reminds me of a pumpkin patch or some little patch of a community garden. Just that word to me sounds local and familiar, and the website will be designed specifically for our community. Even though there are multiple Patch websites out there, ours will be distinctly our town's. This one will be just for Pleasanton, just for our little patch of land in the world.
"Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson