Peter Sklar says, “when you catch a tiger by the tail, you’d better hold on for the ride.” The tiger Peter is referring to is EdHat, the hyperlocal news periodical in Santa Barbara that has become that city’s most popular daily news source.
Peter is bringing EdHat to Ventura and hopes to achieve the same levels of success here.
How big a success is EdHat? In a community of 200,000 people, EdHat receives 1.2 million hits on its website each month. That translates into 6 visits to EdHat for each man, woman and child in Santa Barbara.
Hyperlocal media is reporting news events at the most grass roots level. EdHat uses citizen journalists to post stories and pictures on items of interest, intrigue or curiosity. To reinforce how important hyperlocal media is, AOL’s $50 million investment in Patch, a company that could become the biggest new employer of full-time journalists in the US.
Peter considers himself a “serial entrepreneur” starting up 4 companies—so far. Among his early successes, he built a successful online community for developers. Peter also builds user interfaces, one of which he subsequently sold to Microsoft.
Peter would not give up the secret of how EdHat got its name, despite prompting from me.
Listen to the entire interview below: