I had never heard of Nextdoor when I lived in New York City. Social media services catering to individual neighborhoods weren’t useful in an apartment building where most tenants lasted a year, and longtime residents kept to themselves. In my first year in Texas, however, I’ve regularly relied on Nextdoor, along with my neighborhood’s private Facebook group and the handful of sites that provide hyper-local support.
I’m not the first to say local online forums are the bulletin boards and community papers of our times. They allow neighbors to promote garage sales, find babysitters, or request help to find a lost dog. They’re far from perfect, but in my experience they have helped lower the barrier between me and my community.
To talk about online neighborhood groups, I invited my colleague Ben Popper to the show. Popper is our business editor and has covered Nextdoor a few times, but he’s also a member of his own share of local online communities. Subscribe to What's Tech on iTunes, listen on Spotify, or subscribe via RSS. And be sure to follow us on Twitter. You can also find the entire collection of What's Tech stories right here on the The Verge Dot Com.