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Local reporting has become an endangered occupation. Print publications merge, close down or face budget cuts because audiences and advertisers spend more time and money online. Local broadcasting has not succeeded in filling the gap in local news coverage. The result is that fewer journalists are covering local affairs. Online models were expected to take over the role of traditional media as they were more flexible and cheaper to operate, especially in terms of production and distribution while these media could also use citizen as contributors. In the Netherlands we identified 123 hyperlocal news websites with 350 editions that are more ambitious than the average blogger in terms of scope (local news), frequency (recent updates), business (advertising and other income sources), staff (participation on a regular basis) and journalistic practices (indications of professionalism). We analysed all websites to uncover their business model, their content, their motives and the staff they employ. Data was gathered through content analyses of websites and interviews with owners and staff members. Results indicate that models are extremely diverse, ranging from fully staffed professional operations to spare-time home-operated websites. In terms of revenues, most sites rely on banner advertising. Offering local content does not seem to be the biggest problems. Many sites, however, in particular the smaller operations, suffer from underperformance in terms of business models, advertising, attracting staff and use of social media. Launching a site does not seem to be a major issue, but maintaining it, changing it when technology or market changes demand that, and develop a sustainable business model seems to be more problematic.