News from Amsterdam

To the front page

11/1 Jurists want to stay in Oudemanhuispoort

8/2 Mayor’s portrait

8/2 Websites for social cohesion

7/2 Spreading tourism proceeds with difficulty

7/2 GroenLinks on districts: Be a man

6/2 Zuideramstel opens new office on Sabbath

5/2 The truth about integration

4/2 Wilders has little support on Amsterdam

3/2 Elite involved in neighbourhood

2/2 Johnnie Walker avoids taxes in Amsterdam

1/2 Rotterdam to tinker with district councils as well

31/1 Wooden rowing boats to disappear from Amstel

31/1 ZeeburgTV launched

27/1 Privacy activists to mess up loyalty card system

27/1 A few were still coughing, but that was an act

27/1 Chrisis in de Baarsjes

26/1 Youth have positive view of districts

24/1 Action groups call for Carmel and Jaffa boycott

24/1 PvdA members dismiss plan for districts

23/1 KLM takes on crisis with new uniform

23/1 District office not squatted

21/1 Merge districts

20/1 Closing squat bar Vrankrijk not necessary

20/1 Cleaners welcome new Schiphol director

18/1 Palestine at the Jewish Historical Museum

18/1 What is the right size for a district?

17/1 PvdA Oost against fewer districts

16/1 Committee: 7 districts by 2010

15/1 Soldiers may attend Afghanistan debate after all

15/1 Bait bike leads to arrest

14/1 Youth for Christ to republish vacancies

13/1 Paintings of the Zuidas

13/1 New Youth for Christ contoversy

11/1 Social cohesion initiative raises eyebrows

10/1 Fewer districts in 2010

10/1 Zuidas: People feel that we are losers

9/1 Fun on the ice - but not for all

9/1 Supermarket coupon fraud thwarted

9/1 I Amsterdam must remain exclusive

8/1 Use term Apartheid in every discussion

8/1 No city kiosk in Amsterdam yet

7/1 Snow

7/1 Fatima Elatik to run Zeeburg

7/1 Municipal managers to return to shop floor

4/1 Police: take photo of strange people

3/1 Gaza protest criticises politicians

1/1 Thousands to protest against attacks on Gaza

1/1 Mustapha Laboui leaves district council


2008 Archive

2007 Archive

2006 Archive

2005 Archive





Neighbourhood news now hot in Amsterdam as well

24 January 2007 - Newspaper Het Parool wants to pay more attention to news from the districts and is recruiting a number of neighbourhood reporters. Before the end of this month, news website plans to launch a site, where Amsterdammers can publish their own news reports.

Originally, was to be launched last December. “We are still working on the last bug fixes, we want to have the site in the air by the end of the month”, product manager Jesse Burkunk explains. He is discussing plans with local television channel At5 for future collaboration. For example, the channel might make reports on the basis of stories published at by visitors of the site.

Earlier this month, newspaper Trouw also launched a website with regional news. The content is to be provided by professional journalists as well as regular citizens. “In order to create a news supply that includes both larger news items (‘Central Station in Amsterdam evacuated because of storm’) and smaller ones (‘Amateur theatre group to perform at community centre’)”, the website explains.

Examples like YouTube, a website at which visitors can publish videos, illustrate how visitors of websites are increasingly encouraged to contribute their own content. The initiatives of Trouw and are part of that trend. Like Trouw and, also uses so-called ‘citizen journalists’.

Newspapers Het Parool and de Telegraaf have no plans yet to use regular Amsterdammers as journalists. Het Parool does want to respond faster and in a better way to news from the districts. However, it is recruiting professional journalists for that task, who will work on a freelance basis for the newspaper. Readers should be able to notice the difference ‘as soon as possible’, editor Nathan Vos said.

Even though citizen journalism is becoming a hype, there is criticism as well. “Of course there are constantly people who witness situations that are newsworthy. If they pick up their laptop and make their report generally accessible, all the better”, wrote Dutch ‘journalist of the century’ H.J.A. Hofland last year. However, he is concerned whether independent and professional journalism will gain a foothold on the internet.

He refers to the situation in America: “There are twelve million bloggers there, a third of whom consider themselves journalists. Blogging is a hype”. Incidentally, for now, Trouw will have professional journalists judge all contributions from citizen journalists. does not have the ambition to become a genuine news website: “I think that people who visit understand that it is so-called citizen journalism and if people really want to know what is going on, they can find this at real news websites”, Burkunk said.

Saskia Ploeg of the Amsterdam website finds that established news media look down upon local news and websites that bring such news. She points to the incident of the so-called race riots in Zeeburg after there had been a stabbing last summer.

Reports first suggested that a small number of youth had been involved in a fight, but soon this developed into riots that would have involved hundreds of young people. Ploeg questioned these reports at “This juggling with numbers has highly surprised me”.

In a TV-programme about the issue, columnist Elsbeth Etty quite uncritically defended the professional journalist ‘who has no interest but to write down what he observes’. She suggested that Ploeg would have had an interest in downplaying the seriousness of the incident.

News from Amsterdam will soon publish an investigation into the effectiveness of neighbourhood websites. Examples of such websites can be found here. Photo: Zeeburg after the stabbing (source


Want to receive News from Amsterdam? Click here


This is the old website. Please find new content here