The Huffington Post Media Group issued an omnibus announcement Monday morning, declaring an all-time high in traffic, the acquisition of Localocracy, the launch of four new sites and a new hire.
Though the press release places the acquisitions and launches first, the traffic and popularity of the site have enabled and empowered the company to take this step. HuffPost surpassed 1 billion page views for the first time, and recorded 37 million unique visitors in August, as well as 5.1 million comments.
With its consistent growth since its merger with AOL, HuffPost has continued to expand, and on Monday it announced that it was acquiring Localocracy, “a groundbreaking online engagement platform enabling citizens to solver problems in their communities.”
The site enables the average community member to engage with the government and journalists on issues important to a specific locale.
The site’s co-founders, Conor White-Sullivan and Aaron Soules will join Huff Post to enhance its engagement with its audience. Jay Boice, the site’s technology guru, will also come aboard to help on the technical side.
“They’re pioneers in using the web to empower citizens to improve their towns, and their unique vision and talents will enable us to deepen our users’ engagement with our sites," said Arianna Huffington, President and editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media Group.
Speaking of communities, HuffPost also launched for new sites – HuffPost/50, HuffPost Gay Voices, HuffPost High School and HuffPost Weddings.
HuffPost/50, of which Rita Wilson will serve as editor-at-large, is targeted at the “boomer generation,” and will feature Bill Maher and ABC News’ Christiane Amanpour as bloggers.
“The idea that we boomers are somehow supposed to wind things down as we get older completely escapes me,” Wilson said in a statement. “Exploring the minds and hearts of this group of people is exciting. It's never too late to mix things up, change your life, to get to what you really should be doing -- or want to be doing.”
The addition of four new sections means HuffPost has debuted 21 sections since merging with AOL, extending its ever-broadening scope.
In its expansion, HuffPost has added journalists from a number of venerable outlets, which continued Monday with the hiring of Lisa Belkin. Belkin, who will cover parenting, family and other more personal topics, comes from the New York Times, where she penned the “Motherlode” blog.
There must not be too much changing, the title of hew new blog will be Parentlode.