December 27, 2012 | Filed Under Associated Press, Business, Capitalism, Chicago, Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Tribune, Democrats/Leftists, Ethics, Jobs, Journalism, Liberals, Media, Media Bias, Newspapers, Progressives, Reuters, Warner Todd Huston | Comments Off
-By Warner Todd Huston
In perhaps an unsurprising move, the Chicago Tribune has announced that starting in January, the Chicago-based paper and several other Tribune-owned papers will be dropping the Associated Press as its chief wire service.
Along with Chicago, six other Tribune-owned papers will also be dropping the AP. Those papers are the Baltimore Sun; the Orlando Sentinel; the South Florida Sun-Sentinel; the Hartford Courant; the Morning Call of Allentown, Pennsylvania; and the Daily Press of Newport News, Virginia.
Reports from Tribune insiders were confirmed Sunday by Paul Colford, director of media relations for AP. “We’re disappointed by this development but recognize this is a time of transition for these seven Tribune newspapers,” Colford said. “We hope they’ll return to AP as their circumstances change. AP continues to diversify its business to enhance the value of our newsgathering for our 1,400 member newspapers and other news organizations worldwide. The Los Angeles Times has indicated that it plans to stay with AP. The Times has been a great partner in innovation and developing new AP services for many years.”
This news shouldn’t really be a big surprise as the Trib had already started to scale back use of the AP. As far back as 2008 the Trib began using Reuters’ American wire content.
Long-time Chicago media watcher Robert Feder says that switching to Reuters could save the Tribune as much as $5 million a year.
The Tribune is about to emerge from its four-year bankruptcy, so this cost savings could be a big shot in its bank account.
Chicago’s other major paper, the Sun-Times, is also having contraction pains. The more left-leaning paper has shuttered six of its suburban newsrooms in a cost savings effort. The Sun-Times is also attempting to reset its focus more on its digital products.
“The only end of writing is to enable the reader better to enjoy life, or better to endure it.”
Warner Todd Huston is a Chicago based freelance writer. He has been writing opinion editorials and social criticism since early 2001 and before that he wrote articles on U.S. history for several small American magazines. His political columns are featured on many websites such as Andrew Breitbart’s BigGovernment.com, BigHollywood.com, and BigJournalism.com, as well as RightWingNews.com, RightPundits.com, CanadaFreePress.com, StoptheACLU.com, AmericanDaily.com, among many, many others. Mr. Huston is also endlessly amused that one of his articles formed the basis of an article in Germany’s Der Spiegel Magazine in 2008.
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