a little more love for the yspi blogosphere

This time, it’s a Detroit site called Mi Life Mi Times giving us props. The headline on the Michigan culture and economic development website reads, “Local Bloggers Write Ypsi’s Kick-Ass Anthem.” Unfortunately, the article isn’t terribly accurate (it suggests that some folks, like Matt Callow, are still blogging from Ypsi, and it gives me credit for organizing monthly blogger meetings when I’ve only set up three or four in as many years), but it’s good to know that people outside the immediate area are paying attention. Here’s how the article begins:

Word of mouth has given Ypsilanti its hip cred for years. Refusal to fall in line with Ann Arbor — the polished, overpriced and squeaky clean neighbor — finds many young people living and working in Ypsi.

The “it” stuff that makes a place charming — unique housing, independent restaurants, shopping, history, off-the-beaten-path fun and walkable downtown spaces — has been around for years. But the loyal residents of Ypsilanti transform the old by shouting their praises through a concept more modern: Web 2.0.

Technology has empowered urban devotees in love with their cities, big and small, to get the word out about the newest can’t-miss eatery or local band. MySpace, Facebook, Friendster and Second Life all up the ante on “city cool” for young, digitally-inclined people looking for a less cookie cutter existence…

I know it’s still one hell of a long way away, but wouldn’t it be cool if one day, when a person thought about Ypsi, the first thing to pop into their head wasn’t murder, but our thriving online community, the Shadow Art Fair, and brilliant technology projects like WirelessYpsi? Hopefully we can keep it up long enough for perceptions to change.

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  1. mark
    Posted March 4, 2008 at 10:07 pm | Permalink

    Brett, if you’re reading this, you might want to follow that link. They’re using one of your photos. I suspect they asked for your permission, but….

  2. egpenet
    Posted March 4, 2008 at 11:28 pm | Permalink

    The current issue of the Depot Town Rag and its insightful staff have a created wonderful series of comparisons about A2 and Ypsi … including a LOT about how A2 has not only torn down many of its most historic buildings, but has also deforested its city despite it being the so-called “Tree City.”

    I’d suggest Ypsilanti wrest the title from A2 and go so far as to change its name to Ypsilantree. My hat is off to the Rag.

  3. K
    Posted March 5, 2008 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    When I think of Ypsi I think of people grumbling about Ann Arbor, murder doesn’t even come to mind. Mission accomplished!

  4. Hillary
    Posted March 5, 2008 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

    While everyone is concerned with perceptions, reality persists.

    I swear I’ve unsubscribed from the Militant Feminist Times more than once, though somehow I keep getting it. I guess that’s my punishment for giving the state my e-mail.

  5. schutzman
    Posted March 5, 2008 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

    Yes, I saw, and couldn’t help but note some correlations with the errors you mention.

    No, they didn’t ask.
    Asking is so 20th century.

  6. pot stirrer
    Posted March 5, 2008 at 4:28 pm | Permalink

    Mi Life Mi Michigan steals content. The only reason they’re covering Ypsi at all is because MetroMode did it first. It’s funny how this works. Within a few months, the big Detroit newspapers will be writing about Ypsi, thanks to it’s technology-enabled citizens, having “turned a corner”, and then it will be the TV News. Local first, then national. They’re all a bunch of sheep.

  7. mark
    Posted March 5, 2008 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

    So, Brett, are you telling me it’s not the author of the piece I should be angry with, but you? How dare you leave outdated information out there on the internets to be copied by the press. You should write a letter of apology to them.

    And, Hillary, I’m not sure I get the reference to the Militant Feminist Times. This was my first exposure to My Life Mi Times. Is there usually a militant feminist bent? And what’s the connection to the State? Is it a publication of the MEDC? Does it come out of Granholm’s office? I don’t know the history.

  8. mark
    Posted March 5, 2008 at 11:14 pm | Permalink

    [I just Googled “militant feminist times” and nothing came up… I smell a huge business opportunity… Who wants to invest?]

  9. Hillary
    Posted March 6, 2008 at 12:09 am | Permalink

    Mark: all I know is that I got on the list the first time when I filled out a survey for the state’s cool cities initiative about 5 years ago. I believe it is somehow funded by the state. The address on the website is the same as a company called Brain Gain Marketing.

  10. Posted March 6, 2008 at 7:47 am | Permalink

    Finally! The long sought after recognition for my Ypsi blogging efforts! I shall rest easy tonight in my cozy Ann Arbor bed…

  11. schutzman
    Posted March 6, 2008 at 10:08 am | Permalink


    Yes, you can blame me, but please only blame me for trying to be thorough and, more importantly, kind.

    The reason that, for example, things like The Bunker and Matt Callow are on my page, is because the majority of their archived content (as of right now) is related to Ypsilanti.

    Hence the thoroughness.

    I’ve also given the benefit of the doubt to bloggers that got off to a good start but haven’t updated in a while, as well as those blogs that basically just copy and paste what the other blogs say.

    Hence the kindness.

    Matt- I will have you know that I’m in close contact with both M.I.5 as well as the Queen herself, regarding your geographic identification. You can only be an expatriate of a certain number of places, before you’re legally classified as “Hobo,” you see.

  12. Jimmy Jason
    Posted March 6, 2008 at 10:21 am | Permalink

    I wouldn’t fuck with Matt Callow. He’s a real life Jason Bourne. Dude will fuck a brother up.

  13. Meta
    Posted March 6, 2008 at 11:27 am | Permalink

    It gets worse than Mi Life Mi Times. Have you seen After 5 Detroit:


  14. Hillary
    Posted March 6, 2008 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

    I take it you filled out the survey too because that is another mailing list the state put me on that I’m having a hard time getting rid of. Their website reminds me of late night phone sex advertisements.

  15. Posted March 14, 2008 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

    Hey everyone…I thought I would chime in on the questions regarding Milifemitimes.com, BrainGain Marketing, MEDC, etc. I hope to clarify what we’re all about.

    BrainGain Marketing is a company I started a little over a year ago that came from two of my passions. 1 – Promoting Michigan’s creative economy (I spent two years as Executive Director of CreateDetroit) and 2 – Helping clients engage consumers in conversation using social media. MEDC has been running MiLife MiTimes as an e-newsletter for the past 4 years. In the fall of 2007 they were seeking a company that would be able to make the publication more relevant to new audiences and would be more of a “conversation”. Our company bid on the project in an open competitive bid and won the account. Our aim with the project is to produce bite sized content about cool things happening in and around Michigan – largely taking our clues from Michigan bloggers – and push the stories out of the state to reach national and sometimes global audiences.

    I’m very glad that you – as contributors to the overall conversation – have taken time to comment about what we’re doing and have raised valid points about our credibility and our aim. I can assure each of you that we are passionate about promoting great things in Michigan through social media outreach. We felt the Ypsilanti blogger story is a perfect fit for our target audience and would be beneficial to Ypsi’s efforts to promote what a great City you have.

    As to whether we stole the story from Metromodemedia.com – Metro Mode and the company that produces it – Issue Media Group – is also a client of ours and we frequently reuse content and coordinate our messages as we are trying to reach different audiences and demographics but with the same aim – Positive Michigan Stories.

    If any of you would like to further discuss what we’re doing or have questions for me you can DM me on twitter (ecedo) or go to braingainmarketing.com to get my contact info. I’d be happy to come out to Ypsilanti and hang for a day and meet up with some of you.


    Eric Cedo
    President – BrainGain Marketing
    Publisher – MiLife MiTimes

  16. mark
    Posted March 15, 2008 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    Thank you for the clarification, Eric. It’s not clear from the newsletter, or the site, what the connection is between all the various players, so this is useful.

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