June 14, 2009

PNN: A blog platform for women

Personal News Network from JD Lasica on Vimeo.

JD LasicaHere’s an 8-minute video interview with Leigh Behrens, president and editor-in-chief of PNN.com. The Personal News Network is a community site and blog platforms that targets mostly women, “the fastest-growing segment of user-generated content creators,” Leigh says.

PNN allows you to easily get up and running with a blog and add your own voice and “to begin to grow your own social content on the site,” she says.

“The feedback we keep getting is that there’s really a kind of an intimate, personal and supportive feeling that goes back to our name — Personal News Network. People like the idea that they can share their thoughts and ideas in an environment that’s really supportive.”

Users can add not just text posts but photos, video and audio, too. People post “news” in the broadest sense of the word — a few eyewitness accounts of breaking news but for the most part sharing experiences, observations and opinions with others.

The front page features bloggers writing on such topics as Living, Politics, Money and Gossip. “But anyone can be a star on PNN if their posts are voted up by the community,” Leigh says. Mommy bloggers are a big part of the site as well as “passion groups” like wine, books or parenting.

PNN is working with partners in both the social media and traditional media spaces, and that’s partly inspired by Leigh’s background in journalism. I interviewed her a few years back when she headed up the Chicago Tribune’s MetroMix initiative that was one of the first examples of newspapers engaging the community to provide user-created materials. She then moved to the New York Times to develop verticals such as winetravel.com.

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JD Lasica, founder of Socialmedia.biz, is now co-founder of the cruise discovery engine Cruiseable. See his About page, contact JD or follow him on Twitter or Google Plus.

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