The story so far...

South Edinburgh Net was founded as South Edinburgh's community network by local volunteers from Gilmerton Community Centre on 21st July 1999, around the same time as the community centre was planning it's IT training suite (SENET).

The ethos for a community network came from the award-winning Craigmillar Community Information Service (CCIS), which was at that time a dial-in bulletin board service.  South Edinburgh Net attempted to adapt these ideas for the internet.  (In 2000 CCIS adopted the same web-based system.)

From the beginning there was a working partnership with the local community newspaper, the South Edinburgh Echo, making the Echo the first of Edinburgh's community newspapers to appear online.  In 1999, an internet provision service was set up (VISPScotland) offering dial-up internet access, email, domain registration and webspace, free of charge to local people and groups - supported by advertising revenue from the newspaper.

Between 2000 and 2003 South Edinburgh Net was cited as an example of good practice for community websites by several organisations, both in the UK and the USA.

In 2001, Edinburgh's Lifelong Learning Partnership (with the project name Cityconnect) obtained Lottery Funding to develop a community grid for learning, to be based on many of the features of South Edinburgh Net, but taking the technology several steps forward.  Developers were appointed in 2002 and the award-winning myEdinburgh.org was formally launched on 17th November 2003. 

It seemed a logical step to integrate South Edinburgh Net into the myEdinburgh.org system.  The new South Edinburgh Net was launched in 2005 by the then Leader of the City of Edinburgh Council, Donald Anderson, keeping its own identity (still managed by volunteers) while benefiting from the latest technology and being able to share information with the rest of the city.

Early in 2007, funding for myEdinburgh.org had ended and the project was wound down.  South Edinburgh Net moved to open-source system, PostNuke, along with Tollcross Online, another community website which had been developed under the myEdinburgh system.  A new site was also launched at this time - myEdinburgh.org.uk, reviving many of the features of myEdinburgh.org, and developed by the same team of volunteers.

In 2009 it was clear that all three sites needed to keep pace with technological advancements and could not do so on their own.  The team had been watching the development of Google Sites, and believed that the service offered was capable of supporting the sites and, importantly, new components and features were regularly being added.  The deciding factor was cost, as Google were not charging for the service.

The South Edinburgh Echo's funding ended in July 2009 and the company which published it (South Edinburgh Community Newspaper Ltd) no longer exists.

As internet access and services had become more freely available, VISPScotland was little used and the service finally discontinued in 2010.

South Edinburgh Net, Tollcross Online and the current myEdinburgh are now hosted by Google, and work together by sharing calendar information and news across the sites.

By 2012, and the social media revolution, South Edinburgh Net is on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

The sites are managed by volunteers and receive no external funding.

Help is always wanted to keep the sites up-to-date.

Get in touch if you can help - admin@southedinburgh.net

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