Meet Your Neighbors The New-Fashioned Way

Mike Dronkers / Thursday, Oct. 25, 2012 @ 1:08 p.m. / Non-Emergencies, Our Culture

The county of Humboldt is partnering with Nextdoor.com, a social network that focuses on connecting neighbors with each other. 

You might be thinking "Whatever happened to just borrowing a cup of sugar?"  Fair enough. That was my knee-jerk reaction, too. But I'm old and uncool. And as a recent arrival to a new neighborhood in Eureka, I don't know many people on my street.

New York Times: 

"Nextdoor’s site provides a house-by-house map of neighbors who are members — although members can choose not to have their names attached to their addresses — as well as a forum for posting items of general interest; classified listings for buying, selling or giving away things; and a database for neighbor-recommended local services."

Neighborhood: Eureka High District

The neighborhood boundaries are defined by the local user, and Nextdoor asks that no neighborhood exceed 2,000 residents. 

From the County of Humboldt

"Topics of discussion on Nextdoor are as varied as local events, school activities, plumber and babysitter recommendations, disaster preparedness, recent crime activity, upcoming garage sales or even lost pets.

“Manila is using Nextdoor to connect community members for a number of reasons – security, helping each other, spreading news about events,” said Manila resident Steven Vander Meer. “We are organizing a number of Neighborhood Watch groups, and are hoping to compile lists of recent crimes, notes from meetings, and reports from the Sheriff on Manila Nextdoor.”

According to the press release, the County and Nextdoor have set up 25 different neighborhoods. To date, 11 neighborhoods have established a website. 

Will it work? HSU reported success with their Ning network, and Humboldt Craigslist isn't short on users. If Nextdoor can hit critical mass, it might be yet another tool for building stronger neighborhoods.