Security Questions: A Sense of Place

As part of account verification, the site asks for evidence of actual awareness of a physical aspect of Brattleboro. It’s a unique way to prove not only that a would-be contributor is not a robot, but there is in fact some identification with the town that is the locus of the site. 

[What can you tell us about Brattleboro? (required) ~~ Can you tell us something that only someone with a genuine connection to our area would know?]

iBrattleboro To Become Ai-Brattleboro

The creators of iBrattleboro have announced a new direction for the citizen journalism site. “With 20 years of citizen-generated archived local digital media , we realized that iBrattleboro no longer requires citizens to write about where they live.”  The new site will be 100% driven by artificial intelligence ChatGPT code and will generate stories and comments on behalf of former users of the site.

“We just feed the old site content in as prompts, and it generates fresh new content that seems similar to local news and information,” said the owners.  “It’s almost like people are having conversations locally with one another again.”

Musking and Moderating

Oh, Elon.

Running a community-based site isn’t easy. Take it from us. We were among the first to try the experiment of letting people speak freely online, right here in Brattleboro twenty years ago. We could teach you a lot and save you a lot of time.

Elon Musk is going to go through a sharp learning curve., as we know from experience and Mike Masnik at TechDirt points out in a great article: “Hey Elon: Let Me Help You Speed Run The Content Moderation Learning Curve”

iBrattleboro Passwords Don’t Expire

FYI, we never send out emails telling you that your password is about to expire. Passwords don’t expire on You can change them, or we can change them for you, but nothing is automated.

If you ever get an email asking you to reset your password, it is spam.

iBrattleboro Turns 19

If you like the number 2, today is a good day: 02-20-2022. It’s also the 19th birthday of Can you imagine?

For those new to town, iBrattleboro is citizen journalism. It’s a local, free publishing platform for you to share your news, events, comments, and other Brattleboro things. We have free classifieds and free advertising. Anything you publish gets promoted to over 1600 twitter followers as well.

New Interactive Weather Map for iBrattleboro

iBrattleboro Weather Map

As Tropical Storm Elsa wends her way up the coast, it seems as good a time as any to point out our new weather feature — an interactive weather map! We’re very happy with the new functionality, having lost access to the National Weather Service maps about a year ago.

Before telling you more about the map and its many features, here’s how to find it: go to the iBrattleboro Weather Page and scroll down past the forecast and weather links where you’ll find it labeled Weather Map and Radar. There she blows, and isn’t she a beauty?

iBrattleboro Turns 18

It’s 02-20-2021 and iBrattleboro is 18 today.  Watch out now, we’re all grown up and can vote! Still a few more years until we can rent a car, but hey…

More seriously, the site stated 18 years ago as a place for people in the Brattleboro area to share news, events, information and opinions. iBrattleboro can be whatever you, the community contributor, wants it to be.  If it is exciting and useful, you made it so.

Some iBrattleboro Stats for Early 2020

Wondering how many people are visiting Let’s look at some recent stats.

May 2020 had 33,760 unique visitors, with 60,030 visits to 458,918 pages. (This does not include traffic generated by robots, worms, or crawlers.)

Unique visitors for Jan were just above 27k, Feb had 32.5k, March had just over 31k, and Apr was 22.5k.

Happy 17th, iBrattleboro

Can you believe it? iBrattleboro’s been going for 17 years.  You’ve been people-powering journalism in Brattleboro for almost two decades.

This year, I leave it mostly to you to reflect on your accomplishments. (In addition to your thoughts, feel free to ask questions. We’ll answer anything today.)

Have You News Today Of Your…

I was digging through some old family things and came across a green piece of paper that my grandfather had printed to encourage fellow students to submit news to the college newspaper. It says:


iBrattleboro Turns Sixteen

cats with cake

iBrattleboro comes of age today. The site turns sixteen.

Sixteen means we can get a learner’s permit for driving. We can drop out of school. We can consent. We can get an adult passport, donate blood,  and in some countries vote, drink or join an army.

Some other notable sixteens:  Louis XVI, 16 personality types in the Myers-Briggs system, 16 pawns in a chess set,  the F-16, and it’s the the age Sleeping Beauty pricks her finger and falls asleep.

iBrattleboro Animated Christmas Calendar

Time once again for the animated, interactive, Brattleboro-centric, advent-ish calendar, featuring different scenes and local facts, sponsored by no one. The iBrattleboro Christmas Calendar.

While it is continually popular, we were debating whether to bring this back again this year. The Christmas Calendar is built in Flash, an ancient programming tool that is fading away. iPads and many other devices just don’t allow it anymore.

It’s True. We Moved.

You may have heard rumors and yes, they are true. Lise and Chris have moved up river to Williamsville.

One might ask, and it is a reasonable question, why did we depart the town we love?

Many reasons, but the main one is that we could not find a good place to live within our budget within town limits. The places for sale in Brattleboro this summer were either gorgeous and expensive, or near-dumps.

Big August Ad Deal from iBrattleboro

From now until the end of August, all year-long ads on iBrattleboro are half price! That’s right, a one-time chance to be featured for an entire 12 month year, saving you five hundred dollars.

This is a big, color ad (300x300px) with a link to any web page you want, on a site that thousands check regularly to see what’s going on in Brattleboro and southern Vermont.

iBrattleboro Now Encrypted

SSL Lock is now using SSL – a Secure Sockets Layer certificate. It provides an encrypted link between a server and a client—in this case the web site and your browser.

We’re the first local news site in Brattleboro to do this for you, and we join our fellow community media sites BCTV and WVEW in doing so.

Normally, data such as logins and passwords, is sent between browsers and web servers in plain text. This makes a site vulnerable to a “man in the middle attack,” or site spoofing schemes.

Let’s Look At Photo Fun

The new Photo Fun looks great, and a few have you have already found out how to put photos up. Excellent!

For the rest, you can login and submit a photo by using the Contribute menu in the upper blue bar. This takes you to a simple form for uploading your photo.

Add a title, short description if you want, add your photo, and add tags to describe what’s in the image.

It’s easy to do from a phone or tablet. Take your photo of something in your neighborhood or around town, then submit it here. Your phone should allow you to choose among your recent photos.

Can Author Preview Their Story Before Submission?

I wanted to submit a story, but decided to wait until the following two item can be clarified:

1. I only see a “submit” button, but no preview. Before submitting a story, I want to see how my story will display so that I can make any needed corrections in advance. This was a feature of the old site: Does the new site eliminate that feature, or did I miss something?

Let’s Look at Classifieds

The new Classifieds section is quite nice.  So nice that it has its own link in the upper blue bar. (You can use that pull-down menu to get your own classified. More on that later.)

When you get to the Classifieds page, you’ll see a list of all the current ads. Up at the top is a way to search the classifieds, which might come in handy if you are looking for something specific and there are a lot of ads. You can search by keyword or location.