Friday, April 04, 2014

Why do local newspapers never tell you where they are?

One of the things that is useful about the World Wide Web is that local newspapers often have web pages that have news items about families whose history one is researching. The problem is that there is often nothing on the web page to show where they are. Their print version may only circulate locally, so it would be unnecessary to give that information, but a web page can be seen by people anywhere in the world.

Take this one, for example: Community award for Dunsborough woman | Busselton-Dunsborough Mail.

That one is of interest to me because I am researching the Growden/Growdon family, and so wonder if the person concerned may be related to me. But where is it?

I can see from the domain name of the site that it is probably in Australia, and no doubt I could use a search engine look up Busselton or Dunsborough, but sometimes place names can be quite common, and you can find places with the same name in several different countries, or even different parts of the same country. There are at least two Richmonds and two Heidelbergs in South Africa, for example, and several in other countries too.

OK, a Google search tells me that Dunsborough is a coastal town in the South West of Western Australia, 254 kilometres south of Perth on the shores of Geographe Bay. But would it really cost that much effort for them to put "Western Australia" somewhere on the masthead of their web page?

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