Magazine article The Quill

Media Convergence Face Technical Barriers

Magazine article The Quill

Media Convergence Face Technical Barriers

Article excerpt

When newspapers merge their newsrooms with broadcast and online news partners, it turns out the biggest barrier to multimedia convergence is still of the technical variety.

The Tampa Tribune is probably further along the convergence path than any other paper in America. Richmond, Va.-based Media General Inc. dedicated its media properties to the convergence concept last February when it moved the Tribune, NBC affiliate WFLA-TV, and the Tampa Bay Online (TBO) Internet service into a $40 million building designed to foster interaction among the news-gathering operations.

But one fundamental barrier was overlooked. Because all three media partners have different, incompatible computer systems, this convergence model has resorted to interacting the old-fashioned way-by printing out hard copies and distributing them to the various departments.

The Chicago-based Tribune Co. has faced similar difficulties in its attempts to integrate the print and broadcast properties it acquired in last year's purchase of the Times Mirror Co. …

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