It's already happened: The three large South Florida daily newspapers have morphed together. Now we just have to wonder when they'll officially merge.
I've received two communiques on the "content-sharing agreement" between the three newspapers run amok. And it's starting to get a little weird, sort of like the photo here.
Here's the first:
Sun Sentinel readers probably had reason to believe they were reading the Palm Beach Post on Thursday [of last week].
The local section of the Sun Sentinel's Palm Beach County edition had more staff credit for the Palm Beach Post than its own newspaper.
Here's the tally In the Sun Sentinel:
- Four Sun Sentinel story bylines (only one written by the Palm staff) and three briefs.
- Five Palm Beach Post bylines and two briefs.
- The S-S had four Post photos and one from the Boynton police department; none of its own.
- The front section front page had two local stories, none written by the Palm office. No Sun Sentinel staff photos on the cover.
In the Palm Beach Post, the local section had 11 bylines and five briefs, all written by Post staffers. One photo by staff and one by Treasure Coast (so the Sun Sentinel ran more photos from its former rival in the local section) plus three staff photos and one Boynton police photo on the front section first page.
The front section cover had two stories by its Post staff.
It should be pointed out the Post doesn't zone and the Sun Sentinel has separate Palm and Broward editions.
That came from a journo in my email and then there was this briefer one in a comment yesterday: "Today's Herald Broward local section featured five Sentinel stories and a Post story -- half of the stories in the section."
So the Post is taking over the Sentinel's Palm Beach edition and the Sentinel is beginning to dominate the Herald's Broward edition. What you take away from all this is that competition between the newspapers is all but dead. And it's all done in the name of cutting costs and laying off employees to pay off corporate debt and/or shareholders.