Thursday, June 19, 2008

JOA for Herald and the Sentinel?

Newsosaur believes a joint operating agreement is a viable option for South Florida's two struggling major English language daily newspapers. Such an agreement would have the two competitors share resources like printing presses, trucks, etc. while keeping separate editorial staffs. It's a way reducing expensive duplication that exists.

I knew the Miami Herald had a JOA with the Miami News before that paper ceased operations in 1988 but I didn't know (as Newsosaur points out) that the terms of that JOA included the Herald having to pay former News owner Cox Communications a portion of its profits through 2021.

I think a JOA makes a great deal of sense since, as I've mentioned many times, this whole thing is moving to the internet fast. That means newspapers everywhere have to find ways to cut non-newsroom expenses. Trucks with their fuel and maintenance costs, printing press operations, etc. are extremely expensive.

Newsosaur believes deadlines would have to change in order to accommodate both papers since, unlike the News, the Sentinel is also a morning paper. Newsosaur doesn't contemplate what would happen to El Nuevo Herald, McClatchy's Spanish language paper in the Miami market.

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