Tonight from 6 pm to about 7:30 at the Norristown Public Library, the Norristown Police Dept will hold their monthly Community Meeting. At tonight's meeting, they'll be introducing their newest community engagement tool: Nextdoor, a FREE online social network.
Nextdoor is different from other social networks you might already use, like Facebook, in that Nextdoor is ONLY local residents, and you can choose just how local you want your posts to be.
I joined Nextdoor about 2 years ago when the only people on it were a small group who lived up around the Sandy Hill/New Hope area, and Shae Ashe, who was starting a neighborhood group in the West End. He suggested I start a group in the North End, so I did. An East End neighborhood joined us, and another in Halford Tract (West Norriton) and Coleston (East Norriton). Now we number 212 residents, and cover most of Norristown except for Town Center.
What do we talk about on this network? All kinds of things. Upcoming events, recommendations for everything from handymen to plumbers to auto mechanics to pet groomers, warnings about con men going door-to-door, pot-hole alerts, the new trash cans, etc. If you've got questions about things going on in N-town, you can probably get answers on Nextdoor. You only talk to local residents on Nextdoor, so no one outside the area can get access to the things we post. It's MUCH more secure than Facebook and other networks.
The exciting thing is that the Norristown Police Department will now use Nextdoor to send out alerts and community information. The NPD staff will only be able to see replies to their own posts, and they will NOT be able to view any other content that we post. But it will be great to get firsthand info.
If you can, go to the meeting tonight for all the details about how to join Nextdoor. If you can't go, but you want to join, go to Nextdoor.com. When you type in your address information, it will assign you to one of our neighborhood groups (or ask you if you want to form another group, if you live somewhere not currently within a Nextdoor neighborhood).
I'm looking forward to seeing not only the NPD on Nextdoor, but a lot of Norristown's other residents as well. We've been saying that Norristown needs better communication. Well, here's a good tool. Let's use it.