I missed Blogdigger's announcement about the addition of local a few days ago. Local.blogdigger.com appears to be a mix of local search, blog/news search and community.
The results of my few quick searches weren't very impressive. But the concept is pretty interesting.
From the press release:
€œIt is well known that Weblogs have created a global conversation, on a global scale,€ said Greg Gershman, President of Blogdigger. €œBut conversations are happening at a local level as well, and Blogdigger Local does the job of identifying those conversations and in order to bring people together on a community level. Whether it€™s citizens€™ journalism, grass-roots media, or just personal opinion, Blogdigger Local connects participants in new and useful ways.€
The company said that it had partnered with Whizspark Corp., "an online event marketing service," which will target ads to local users that are conducting local searches on Blogdigger. The company is also soliciting advertisers through its site. In addition, Blogdigger serves AdSense ads.
If search results can't identify blogs that are directly relevant, it shows users the "closest blogs" to the geography identified. In one sense this is absurd (why do I care where a blog is based if the content is not relevant to me?). But I'm still fascinated by the combination of blogs and location.
It's really another spin on online communities/social networks, with blogs as the source of the user-generated content. But these folks are probably ahead of their time.
The concept requires a considerable amount of user-generated/blog content that is locally and otherwise relevant to promote repeat usage. And even though Pew earlier reported that 8 million Americans had "created blogs," we're still some time away from enough content to really make the Blogdigger local search experience a rich one.
Still, we'll be watching to see what develops.
P.S.: Given that Bloglines has said it's going to develop a better blog search engine — and now that it's owned by Ask Jeeves, which is owned by IAC — it will be interesting whether they pick up on this and try and work some local/geotargeting element into their offering.