Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Odd Couple: Newspaper, Television Station Team Up to Cover Local News

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

Odd Couple: Newspaper, Television Station Team Up to Cover Local News

Article excerpt

Odd couple

Newspaper, television station team up to cover local news

What's this? A newspaper and a television station joining forces for local news coverage?

Yup. That's what's happening between the San Diego Tribune and KGTV Channel 10, which have formed Newslink for coverage of the same stories.

Recently, the odd couple cooperated on a probe of nursing homes which ran as a three-part, Page One story in the afternoon Tribune. In another instance, photographers for the Tribune and Channel 10 shot a major fire from the tv station's helicopter.

On some stories, Channel 10 news staffers are interviewing Tribune reporters in the paper's newsroom for broadcast.

"The station gave the nursing home four minutes of airtime and our logo was very prominent in the background," recalled Tribune editor Neil Morgan. In exchange, the Tribune's July 23 issue carried a Page One notice that Channel 10 that night would broadcast a segment about the owners of a nursing home who had turned it into a "warm, caring place."

Morgan said the purpose of the arrangement is to combine what he termed the "most comprehensive source of information in San Diego County," meaning the Tribune, with the "best source of broadcast news." The editor of the Copley paper told E&P that the idea was suggested by former CBS News anchor Walter Cronkite while the two were having dinner in New York three months ago.

"Walter told me network news would be dead in five years and local tv news would be dominant," Morgan related.

In pointing out the benefits of the tie-in, Morgan explained: "An afternoon paper must be talked about a lot. Channel 10 reaches a lot more people than we sell newspapers [to] and it's giving us exposure." Moreover, Morgan continued, the arrangement comes when the Tribune, for the first time, is moving into north San Diego County with single-copy sales and KGTV "has a very strong signal that reaches that area. …

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