Topix.net is a news aggregator site that collects information from various sources into a central page. Probably, one of its coolest features is you can browse virtually any topic in any location – so you can get incredibly specific in your criteria; here is the page for Portland Real Estate, for example.
Steve Rubel reports today that Topix.net, which is a joint venture run by the newspaper giants Gannett, Knight Ridder and Tribune, has unveiled a brand new free classifieds section in its pages. This is a direct shot at the craigslist juggernaut. They're now soliciting ads in services, for sale, jobs, events and more importantly (for this site's purposes anyway), housing.
While craigslist demolishes Topix's traffic (via alexa.com) I think this is an important development as the newspapers struggle with the impact of the Internet on their advertising revenue. In the real estate space, it certainly complicates Tribune's recent buy out of ForSaleByOwner.com.
What is clear however, is there have never been so many free opportunities for FSBOs to market their properties online.