'Washington Post,' Bloomberg Join Forces

Washington Post/Bloomberg

The Washington Post and Bloomberg news are preparing to launch a new news service as part of a deal that will also give Bloomberg access to Post content for distribution on its financial news network. The service is part of a wave of new content-sharing arrangements between major news providers, as various outlets seek to boost content offerings while cutting back expenses.

The new joint news service -- which will go by the clear, if ungainly, moniker The Washington Post News Service with Bloomberg News -- is scheduled to go live on January 1, and will post about 120 stories per day.

The partnership benefits both partners by giving them exposure to new audiences: the Post can tap into Bloomberg's pool of 300,000 demographically desirable subscribers, while Bloomberg's content will reach roughly 1 million subscribers to the newspaper's print edition, and an even larger number of online readers: The Washington Post claims its Web site attracts 8 million unique visitors per month, 80% of them outside the Washington metro area.



The deal also allows the Post to maintain substantial business content offerings after it got rid of its stand-alone business section earlier this year.

This week, WashPo severed its decades-old content-sharing agreement with the Los Angeles Times. With the end of this arrangement, the latter is now free to contribute its content to a joint news service operated by McClatchy and Tribune Co. (which owns the LA Times).

The Post-Bloomberg agreement is just the latest in a series of news-sharing partnerships.

Between September and December 2008, Politico signed up 67 newspapers, which share ad revenue and political news content with the Web site, including The Arizona Republic, Des Moines Register, Atlanta Journal-Constitution and The Philadelphia Inquirer, as well as all 27 dailies owned by Advance Publications.

In November, CNN pitched newspapers on CNN Wire, a low-cost alternative to the Associated Press, and in December, The Washington Post and Baltimore Sun announced a local content-sharing deal.

Then in February, five newspapers in New York and New Jersey, including The New York Daily News, unveiled a content-sharing club called the Northeast Consortium, followed in March by the formation of a similar local news-sharing pact by four Tennessee newspapers -- The Knoxville News Sentinel, Commercial Appeal, The Tennessean, The Chattanooga Times Free Press. Also, McClatchy Co. is sharing foreign news stories with The Christian Science Monitor.

Last year, eight Ohio newspapers formed their own news-sharing service.

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