By Art Hanson on March 11th, 2011
| Tags: RSS | 1 Comment »
We’re pleased to announce that community and agency RSS feeds have been added to Nation of Neighbors. In addition to visiting the website for local news and subscribing to email alerts, you can now subscribe to your community news feed with your favorite RSS reader. You can also incorporate your feed into your community website or Facebook page.
Community feeds include both posts and reports. Agency feeds currently only include reports. All feeds return the most recent 20 items by default.
If you are incorporating a feed into your community website, you can add query parameters to the feed URL to modify the default behavior. Specifically, you can specify a ‘limit’ parameter to specify how many items to return and the ‘type’ parameter to choose between posts and reports.
A few examples:
Default Feed – last 20 reports and posts combined:
Custom Feed – last 50 reports:
Custom Feed – last 5 posts:
By Art Hanson on February 17th, 2011
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The National Sheriffs’ Association is now accepting nominations for the 8th Annual National Neighborhood Watch Awards of Excellence. There are some outstanding Neighborhood Watch programs using Nation of Neighbors. If your local neighborhood Watch program deserves recognition, please follow the link in the announcement and submit a nomination!
The original announcement is below:
The National Sheriffs’ Association in partnership with the Bureau of Justice Assistance, Office of Justice Programs, U. S. Department of Justice is pleased to announce that they are accepting nominations for the 8th Annual National Neighborhood Watch Awards of Excellence to be presented during the General Section of the 2011 National Sheriffs’ Association Conference in St. Louis, MO.
All law enforcement agencies, Neighborhood Watch groups, organizations, and/or programs that have made an exceptional contribution to the Neighborhood Watch program in their communities are encouraged to submit nominations to the National Sheriffs’ Association by March 31, 2011.
For complete information on eligibility, criteria, and nomination forms please visit
By Art Hanson on December 10th, 2010
| 2 Comments »
You are invited to participate in a short survey about your use of Nation of Neighbors.
The purpose of this research is to understand how people you use Nation of Neighbors to learn and communicate about local crime so that your online experience can be improved.
This research is funded by the National Science Foundation and is being conducted by researchers at the University of Maryland, College Park in collaboration with Nation of Neighbors.
By Art Hanson on September 29th, 2010
| Tags: NSF, University of Maryland | No Comments »
I am pleased to announce that the University of Maryland has received a grant from the National Science Foundation to support Nation of Neighbors by developing a Community Analysis Visualization Environment. The University of Maryland team includes experienced researchers and graduate students in computer science and sociology who will conduct research in cooperation with Nation of Neighbors, which will aide us in determining what contributes to community success and failure.
You can view the abstract and award details here: http://www.nsf.gov/awardsearch/showAward.do?AwardNumber=0968521
This project will help us focus our efforts on areas that contribute to our success and will also benefit community leaders and local government partners by providing a new tool set, allowing them to refine their own efforts.
We are excited to be working with the University of Maryland team and look forward to the positive impact on our service as well as the contribution to other projects that will benefit from this research. We will be publishing additional information over the next few weeks, including information about how you can be involved.
By Art Hanson on June 2nd, 2010
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Nation of Neighbors currently accepts two primary types of user created content – ‘reports’ and ‘posts’. Reports, created only with the report page, are intended to be timely user-submitted reports of crime or suspicious activity tied to a specific geographic location. Posts, created from your home page or community page, are intended to be about everything else related to your community. There is a reason things were set up that way. However, in practice, it often leads to confusion. My current plan is to integrate the two content types, preserving the features of both. The only exception is anonymity. We don’t currently associate user information with reports. We do with other content. My proposal is to add a ‘post anonymously’ option to all content. The user information would be saved in the database so that we can send the poster replies (a major shortcoming with our current system – we currently don’t know who to send replies to). However, user information would not be displayed. I’ve exchanged emails with some of you already regarding this change and the response thus far has been positive. If I haven’t already spoken with you, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the proposed change.
By Art Hanson on May 14th, 2010
| Tags: sponsor | 2 Comments »
Buddy Bar Door Jammers
I am pleased to announce our first sponsor – the Buddy Bar Door Jammer. The Buddy Bar is simply the best door jamming device available – next to parking a Caterpillar D9 in your house.
Deciding to accept advertising was an agonizing decision. Unfortunately, Nation of Neighbors costs money to run and our current level of sponsoring members, though extremely helpful, does not yet cover our costs. While I believe that Nation of Neighbors offers a very attractive local advertising platform, I really dislike web advertising. There are so many over-the-top too good to be true in your face ads on the web that I tend to immediately write off anything I see advertised online. So rather than simply put pay per impression ads all over every page on our site hoping that people click them, we’re going to try something a little different – business sponsorship. My pledge to you is this: we will only advertise products or services that we would use ourselves, that are relevant to our users, that represent a good value and, to the extend possible, are offered by local US based businesses.
The Buddy Bar fits those requirements perfectly. It’s a simple door jamming device that slips under the doorknob on any door and prevents the door from being forcibly opened. It’s manufactured and sold by a small family run business in Idaho and, while you can buy a cheaper door jammer, you can’t buy a better one. Considering that most home break-ins are the result of a door being kicked in, the Buddy Bar is the perfect solution – protecting you and your family from home invasion. The Buddy Bar Door Jammer is also a great solution for shared homes, apartments and dorm rooms.
You can learn more about the Buddy Bar here. If you purchase a Buddy Bar, be sure to enter coupon code ‘NoN’ – you’ll receive a small discount and a portion of your purchase will benefit Nation of Neighbors. Limited (hopefully non-intrusive) ads will begin running next week. As we explore this new avenue for offsetting our costs, we’d appreciate your input.
By Art Hanson on March 23rd, 2010
| 1 Comment »
I’m pleased to announce that we’ve completed the transition to a new text messaging provider and text messaging is back online. If you added your phone number but never received your confirmation code, you can expect to receive a message from Nation of Neighbors shortly. I’m also pleased to announce that we will soon add the capability to file reports via text message as well!
By Art Hanson on March 16th, 2010
| 2 Comments »
I’m pleased to announce that Nation of Neighbors Neighborhood Watch signs are now available for purchase directly through our website: http://www.nationofneighbors.com/neighborhood-watch-signs
Neighborhood Watch signs serve two important functions: They let scam artists, crooks and solicitors know that they’re being watched and that they’ll likely be reported. More importantly, they serve as a constant reminder to community members to be vigilant and to report suspicious activity.
Our Neighborhood Watch signs are a little different. We think that’s a good thing – they get attention. They illustrate the relationship between vigilant community members and police and prominently feature the Nation of Neighbors online reporting address. Of course, our signs also come with a free real-time community alert system!
Our signs are high quality screenprinted on 0.08 Aluminum with 3M High Intensity Prismatic backing. Signs are predrilled, include mounting hardware (please specify your post type when ordering) and are pretreated with a wax coating to facilitate easier removal of graffiti. Printed locally in Charles Town, WV.
Prices are $20 (6″x12″), $40 (12″x18″) and $55 (18″x24″). Supporting members receive a 10% discount on each sign, regardless of quantity. If you need for than 10 signs, please contact us for an additional discount.
Signs can be customized with your community or agency name for a minimal additional charge ($5 per sign). Please contact us for details.
By Art Hanson on March 14th, 2010
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We’ve learned that our text messaging provider, Clickatell, is experiencing outages delivering text messages to mobile networks in the United States. We first learned about this problem several days ago. Unfortunately, I wasn’t clear that it was adversely affecting us until earlier today.
Some of our customers have been experiencing difficulty sending and receiving messages in the US, which we have investigated further. We have strict guidelines regarding use of our messaging service, that is consistent with MMA guidelines. Unfortunately a customer violated these guidelines; thus creating a cascading series of events which resulted in a connectivity disruption. We are working diligently to restore service to our US customers. Again we are aware of the difficulty that this incident has caused many of our customers. We apologize and look to restoring our quality service as quickly as we can.
Unfortunately, this means that we are not currently able to send text messages. Rather than wait to see if this problem is resolved, we’re actively looking for a new provider and hope to have text messaging restored quickly.
Please note that this has no effect on email alerts.