We had one of those weeks at Oakland Local that forces us to reexamine and reaffirm our role as a hyper-local news and community platform. Right now, in real time, neighborhoods across Oakland are negotiating changing identities. These negotiations are in property lease biddings and between tenants and landlords; between cyclists, cars, buses and pedestrians; between suspicious people, the people they find suspicious and cops; these negotiations are in the smells of aloo gosht from the tenants’ kitchen on the second floor mingling with the smells of jerk chicken on the third floor; they are in offices of City Council members and on front porches in the moment a new neighbor approaches to introduce herself. And they are here, in online forums.

Thank you to all the commenters who wrote thoughtfully and compassionately about your vision for this shared space. Let’s keep reaching out, keep working toward resolutions. If we can’t do it in Oakland it can’t be done.

The most read articles this week were two back-to-back Community Voices pieces. Steve Kopff’s post about his “Brooklyn Neighborhood Beautification Project” has been removed upon his request but you can read the comments associated with it here. Dannette Lambert’s 20 ways to not be a gentrifier took up the conversation, inspiring a range of testimonials from locals on the volatile and personal issue.

Laura McCamy’s coverage of the West Oakland tenants banding together against a slumlord was an example of serious collective resilience in the face of adversity. Just when things start to feel really divisive, you find a story it seems like everyone can get behind.

Lastly, we appreciate the huge readership of Jon Leckie’s piece on how to conserve water during the drought. We have to be so, so thrifty in this scary time for California.

New month, new moon, new week: let’s make it a good!

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