Monday, January 28, 2013

Stephanie Gross Explains Community Sharing on Patch

Stephanie Gross, editor of the Oconee Patch, is building an online tool where residents can read and share news, events, and community insights.

Gross showing some of Patch's
features to a journalism class.
She perks up and the excitement builds in her shoulders as she explains to a class of journalism students that, as the site operates 24 hours a day, she has to be ready to go work on breaking news coverage at 2 a.m.

Gross is driven by her genuine care for Oconee County and her reporting is strong because of it.
Patch is a good fit for her passion. This news organization, owned by AOL and headquartered in New York City, runs websites all over the country where people in the area can connect.

Gross said to the class that, while it is a news website with local reporting, “it’s really more of a community site” where people’s blogs are published, user photos are added to news stories, events are posted, and the cheapest gas prices are updated.

It’s clear from Patch’s homepage that Gross incorporates social media and multimedia in her news coverage to make it more relevant to users.  

While she couldn’t reveal all the details, she did say that Patch had far outperformed its goals. With all the user-involvement allowing her to tailor the coverage it’s no surprise the site is doing so well.

Check out the Oconee Patch at or the Athens Patch at

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