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Editor’s Note: Winding Down our Community News Project

After nearly 12 years, will be winding down over the next few months and cease publishing in January 2021. 

This announcement comes with great respect and much gratitude to our strong and supportive readership. Simply put, the site has over-stretched our technical and spare-time limits as an ad-hoc operation. Year after year, I wondered how long I could sustain this community news project. Each day was a scramble to publish multiple articles without any full-time staff on a platform never intended to “scale,” nor to be a decade-plus business. I am proud of our extra effort to be fair, even-handed and stick to the facts. I kept putting off the inevitable closing and when the COVID-19 pandemic hit in early 2020, I felt we had to at least finish out the year. I have follow-on ideas, however, I do not plan to replace at this time.

As stated on our About page from when I founded the site in 2009, my vision was to “fill in the gap” when citywide newspapers stopped covering community news. I wanted to create a resource where neighbors, businesses and local groups could come together and share information. I believe the site and newsletter certainly achieved that goal.

Social media barely existed when the site first started. Today, everyone is a reporter with a smartphone. And, most community groups have their own newsletters, many of which we helped develop along the way. I believe the site is closing at a time when neighbors are more empowered than ever to “fill in the gap.”

Starting in October, daily postings on the site will slow down as we work on archiving. The email newsletter will go from daily to 2-3 times per week and will stop in mid-January 2021. Importantly, the full archive of posts will remain online and searchable for the foreseeable future.

I will save the many “thank you’s” for a follow-on post. For now, on behalf of our managing editor, Amanda, along with our current crew, Katie, Alyssa and Steve, let me simply express our sincere thanks to all our readers for your diehard support over the years. We have been fortunate to have strong patrons and sponsors to keep us going for so long. As for me, I will still be around and looking forward to the next chapter. 

Matt Conti, Founder/Editor

21 Replies to “Editor’s Note: Winding Down our Community News Project

  1. Wow. Very sad to see this announcement. We’re lucky to have had this platform and will miss the coverage greatly.

    Thanks for everything!

  2. Very sad to hear this news! I will miss the camaraderie with the regular’s in the comment sessions. I will miss the brilliant writing and storytelling of Nick Fellow Russo and his “Life on the corner ” columns. I will miss the beautiful photos of Matt’s. I want to thank Matt Conti & his staff for all the work & sweat to put out a journal 24/ So to all the NEW contributors & Matt & staff Buono Fortuna and good luck 🍀 in your next venture.

  3. Wow. Sorry to hear of this. Great publication that allowed people from all locations to keep up with the news of the neighborhood that is loved by many. Hoping someone decides to fill the gap. Thank you for your many years of providing news and history to your readers and supporters.

  4. Very sad indeed, but a brilliant accomplishment. The site always had a professional look and is probably the best managed Word Press site I’ve seen. Readers should know that many publications with full-time IT staffs use Word Press and this has been an amazing feat for some having a day job. Hat’s off to you Matt and your gang of contributors.

  5. Matt it’s been a pleasure reading this site daily since at least 2014/2015. I always go on around the 4:00/5:00 mark I have enjoyed every column, also Social Highlights I mentioned before it’s my favorite one to read. Sad to hear this, I kind of knew this would come but I really hope there is a back up one day. It’s also good to say hi to you down the feasts every summer and all. Your a good man and photographer and hope next summer will be better. On to the next chapter!

  6. Matt,

    You and your team are rock stars and friends! Thank you for all you have done to support the community. Your site has really connected me to the neighborhood since I only work here and not live here. We are so grateful for all you have done to promote the good work of ABCD, in particular our site the ABCD North End/West End Neighborhood Service Center (NE/WE NSC). I look forward to following your travel journeys and seeing the beautiful photographs you take. “See” you and the crew around!

  7. Thank you Matt. You accomplished your goal. You and your staff were always extremely helpful to the Friends of the North End Library. Your coverage gave our programs the needed exposure to make the Friends’ programs successful and allow us to reach our community. The Friends will miss you personally and miss your coverage.

  8. Dear Editor,
    As a North End Newbie, arriving just as Covid-19 began, I have depended on North End Waterfront as my introduction to the neighborhood. Every morning, your News and Views has let me know what’s happening. Definitely will miss this online publication. Thanks for helping me know how to negotiate a new neighborhood.
    Good luck!! jg

  9. Matt,
    I am surprised and saddened to read this news. Logging on to the NorthEndWaterfront page every day was a way for me to stay connected to the North End where I grew up. I’ve enjoyed your wonderful photography, I’ve enjoyed reading all the articles by Nick Dello Russo and I am thankful that you published my stories about my childhood in the North End. Good luck in your future endeavors. I know we will be hearing from you again.

    1. Natalie ,are you Michael Romano’s sister . I remember as a child growing up on Prince st I remember the name Natalie Romano . A woman named Blanche and a guy known as uncle Mikey. If not my apologies.

      1. I have a cousin, Michael Romano, who lived on Commercial St. Not sure it’s the same person.

  10. Matt – as I shared with you when I first heard about your decision to shut down the Northend Waterfront News – The newsletter will be missed in so many ways. Your coverage of all the community meetings made me feel like I learned more even though I couldn’t attend them. I will miss Nick Dello Russo’s articles which made me feel like I knew so much about what it was like to live here many years earlier than the 27 years I have experienced. Your video’s of important events made events like tall ships, the constitution turn arounds, Columbus Park tree lighting, Feasts, fireworks and parades come alive to name a few. I always knew your photography was so superb that I didn’t need to worry that I didn’t capture everything. Your calendar was my way of making sure I didn’t miss anything that was important to me.

    Thanks so much for all the time you invested in making this a first class newsletter. Your work has been soooo much appreciated!

  11. Matt, So sad to hear, but hope that someone may be able to figure out a way to continue the newsletter. It’s the best neighborhood news source since The Italian News of the 1950s, if I may tip my own hat. Many thanks.

  12. I am saddened to see you are closing down operations. I started getting your newsletter when I lived in Boston. I always found it so informative, and it gave me a real insight into one of Boston’s best neighborhoods. The useful information helped me see the area with different eyes when I would walk about the streets. After I moved down to the Cape, I kept up with your newsletters because I still found them so interesting and it kept the news fresh for my return visits. I wish you all the best and give you a big THANK YOU for the service you have provided.

  13. Matt, I am sorry to hear that you will be closing down the North End Waterfront News. It has been a great source of information and a means for former North Enders like myself to keep up with current events in the NE.
    As Secretary for The Friends Of The North End, I cannot thank you enough for all you have done for us in publishing our events and notices. I wish you the very best in whatever you plan to do in the future.
    I hope you will keep publishing you photos on a website, you are an amazing photographer.
    Best to you
    Arthur Sonny Lauretano
    and the members of FONE.

  14. Just wanted to say thank you for everything you’ve done! We moved to Boston almost 6 years ago. As you can imagine, coming from Phoenix, AZ to the North End was a big adjustment and it was your publication that helped me get familiarized with my neighborhood. Thank you for everything.

  15. It’s going to be hard for me to describe how valuable a contribution you made this neighborhood to this place, to the world, but I’ll try.

    Iconographer with a camera of everything and everywhere, Cuba United States North End of Boston, anything that could be captured through a lens. The service provided to the neighborhood is of immeasurable value, your legacy will continue. As an arbiter of the social traffic on the site you did an extraordinary job. You had a difficult job indeed, but managed it with finesse.

    The site disseminated information that everybody needed to know it was became the glue that held a lot of the neighborhood together, and made its members feel like they were important parts of something bigger. You guided that traffic with a very gentle and fair hand, always watchful of people’s posts and ensuring that people were civil to each other.

    As a visual artist, I think you are second to none. I’ve said that before about your photography and your discerning and perceptive eye. Maybe that’s why we got along, we share an irrepressible desire to record that which could be visually apprehended, you with your camera and I with my pen.

    Matt, I’ve lived in this neighborhood since 1960 and thought I saw it all. You came along and helped me, and everybody here, see so much more.

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