Fremont, CA - yahoogroups, blogs, fb, keep us together, COMCAST & AT&T control access.
We have a newspaper which is error-prone, we have standard local cable access, and we have some good community free papers, but really what keeps the community going are a combination of local meet-ups, and PTA yahoogroups, with blogs and facebook repeating important information. We haven't yet gotten to the sophistication of Oakland Local, though the idea is bouncing around town.
In short - we can get the news around, and are improving in a local-customized way (there are about 200 languages spoken in town), so long as cable and cell providers don't cause us all to disconnect during the recession.
My cable (Comcast) -- for my internet only -- is not only my most expensive utility, but twice as much as the next most expensive.
There are alternatives: go to a community free-wifi spot, which I have to do anyway when Comcast breaks. Or I could join an expensive health club that gives free internet access and is open 5am-midnight. That's LESS expensive than my Comcast bill. There is also the data feed on my cell phone.