Local Sites With Revenue Over $1M Annually


StateCollege.com covers State College, PA. Built by City Portals, they claim that they have helped local newspapers to grow revenues by 6x.

I just ran across an interesting PDF that lists local / niche news sites, listing their annual revenue.  Revenue for local news / feature sites has been a challenge for the news industry as well as for domain name investors.  Some have succeeded; mostly, people like Fred Mercaldo, and the Castello brothers who all own great city or regional domain names like PalmSprings.com and Scottsdale.com.

But big revenues don’t come easy for these kinds of sites.  This may be changing.  I have followed the online news / media business for many years and recently run across Michelle’s List.  This site, produced in collaboration with the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism tracks the success of online media.  They just added eight new local news / niche sites with annual revenues of over $1 million dollars each.  That’s nice to see.

The newest list includes sites like 30A.com. 30A celebrates small-town beach life along Florida’s Scenic Highway 30-A and started as a local beach guide but  is fast becoming an international brand. Others include Soo Today and the NJ Spotlight which are local news sites.

The entire list is available online here:


or here:


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Hats for Cats

Godaddy is our competitor but you have to give them credit for a really funny commercial…

I’ll say nothing more except, LOL.

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Where to Eat in Chicago

As a Chicago native (now living in California for many years) I often get asked about restaurants and food in Chicago. I’ve been gone a long time but when we go back these are some of the places and restaurants we think about. I don’t know how much time you will have there but I’m going to give you the places that people go to and talk about that know Chicago food (I’m sure I’m missing a few so am open to more current suggestions too :-)).

Look for RICOBENE’S PIZZA near downtown on the south side (but don’t buy pizza; buy one “BREADED STEAK SANDWICH” to split). It is full of delicious cheese and is a lot of food for a normal human being and as long as you’re comfortable to share is plenty for two. Don’t go there on a first date there; it is messy. http://www.ricobenespizza.com/ Really good; You should love this.

If you want to have dinner and a cool Chicago experience go to TUFANO’S VERNON PARK TAP in the old Italian neighborhood of Taylor Street. It’s an old Italian restaurant and is really authentic Italian food. Warning: They don’t take credit cards (at least they didn’t used to). Order anything Italian. It’s all good. https://sites.google.com/site/tufanosrestaurant/

After either of these two places, you will be in the TAYLOR STREET AREA (after dinner and if it is summer) go out right nearby for an ITALIAN ICE AT MARIOS: http://www.eatmarios.com/ . It is very close to Tufano’s or Ricobene’s – You can almost walk there from Tufano’s but it might be better to do a cab or Uber (it’s very close). You’ll love that Italian ice. I crave it. – MARIO’S ITALIAN ICE – 1068 W Taylor St, Chicago, IL 60607 – The neighborhood is an old Italian neighborhood and is good but don’t stray too far out of that neighborhood walking.

For lunch, find either a PORTILLO’S OR AL’S BEEF – (and don’t buy a hot dog). http://www.alsbeef.com/locations.html or http://www.portillos.com/locations/ – Order a “WET BEEF” and fries. This is a specialty that you can pretty much only find in Chicago. There are Portillo’s and Al’s all around Chicago and the suburbs. Italian beef is a real Chicago specialty. There is a Portillo’s in Buena Park, CA though and me and my wife go there often.

Try Giordano’s for pizza. https://www.giordanos.com/locations/all-locations/ – It’s a chain but pretty good for Chicago pizza. Other good pizza places downtown are Uno’s and/or Due’s Pizzeria’s – They’re both good. You can try their DEEP DISH PIZZA. It’s really good but usually gives me heartburn because I eat too much.

About hot dogs… Almost anywhere you see a little hot dog stand will usually be good but some that we especially like are:

  • In Cicero: HENRY’S HOT DOGS on Ogden Avenue
  • On the north side of Chicago: I remember going to JIMMY’S HOT DOGS on Grand and Pulaski as a kid. 4000 W Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60651. They were good. Be careful of the neighborhood though.
  • On the south side of Chicago: I remember a few hot dog stands named “NICKY’S”. I used to love them.
  • Some Suburbs: In River Grove: A lot of people talk about GENE & JUDE’S. I haven’t been there but hear it is good.

Before you leave Chicago, stop somewhere to have a GYRO SANDWICH. There are stands everywhere in Chicago. They’re almost always good and they serve them with a delicious white sauce. Buy the ones that are fresh sliced off the vertical rotisserie. Those are the best and are plentiful in Chicago. These are a favorite for me and a little more difficult to find in California.

Last!  I’ve been gone a long time and if you know that I’ve missed something, please let me know.  I’m always interested in where to eat when I come back to Chicago.

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Revenge on the Telecom Robot

I have an old phone number that I like and that I’ve used for almost 18 years.  I have robots calling me every day.  I’m sure that the “telemarketers” (aka spammers) unleashing these robots on the public won’t like this but it is one of the funniest things I’ve seen in a while.

It uses advanced technology that, I promise you, you have already likely been a victim of; artificial intelligence; basically a robot that sounds so human that it fools many, maybe most humans. I’ve had several “conversations” with these robots already and only realized they were robots after talking to them for a while.

Now, a group called the Jolly Roger Telephone Company has a robot that answers your phone and wastes the telemarketer’s time.  If I’m truthful, I don’t mind real people calling me.  I usually don’t give them much time any more so I sort of feel sorry for this guy (the caller), but not too much.  I get a lot of calls every day and the worst of them are the robots.  Below is at least a small taste of  sweet revenge after years of abuse by the telemarketing industry.  Remember the person being called is a robot…


The Jolly Roger Phone Company just ran a Kickstarter campaign and did not reach their goal so they weren’t funded. If I’m honest, I really don’t care to see a war on human telemarketers. I just hope I’ll be forgiven for this moment of basking in the funniness of it.
One last note: This robot sounds like me! I really heard myself in that robots voice.

Read more… | Source:Kickstarter | Date posted: 3/3/2016

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