Both Gannett and McClatchy are cutting back their use of content from the Associated Press, shaking up two big chains’ relationships with the 177-year-old wire service. The New York Times’ Benjamin Mullin broke the Gannett news on X, citing an internal memo, then followed with a story that included McClatchy. The AP, for its part, told The Wrap that it was “shocked and disappointed to see this memo,” saying that talks with Gannett were ongoing.

Simon Owens, who writes a Substack newsletter on the media, said he also was surprised — that it didn’t happen sooner. He says he’s long considered newswire companies to be anachronisms in the post-internet era that has erased regional monopolies. ”But now . . . with every competitor merely a click away, a media outlet has a much harder time recouping its costs on content that’s simultaneously displayed across thousands of websites.”

Dan Kennedy on Media Nation explored some nuances: That Gannett will use Reuters and that it would still use AP for election returns. At Poynter, Rick Edmonds explained why the companies’ decisions to cut AP might actually stick, where some in the past have not.

Earlier in the week, Axios reported that the AP was launching an ecommerce site called AP Buyline.

(X/@BenMullin, The New York Times, The Wrap, Simon Owens’s Media Newsletter, Media Nation, Poynter, Axios)


These are the stories that captured the most interest from Need to Know subscribers this week.

Find your people: These groups bring digital news orgs together for learning, sharing, and venting. Joshua Benton made a Venn diagram of the groups and associations that represent digital news organizations. (Nieman Lab)

How Hispanic Americans get their news. More than half of U.S. Hispanic adults get their news mostly in English, according to a new survey. There is a big difference between those born in the U.S. and those born outside the country. (Pew Research Center)

Love your community and watch your revenue models do better. Rob Golub, editor of the Wisconsin Jewish Chronicle, writes that the best way for a news organization to strengthen its revenue model is through solidarity with its community. (Poynter)


How moral injury is impacting the news industry and what you can do about it

There’s a term for that soul-crushing feeling you can get as a journalist when you see something that violates your ethical code: Moral injury. API spoke with three experts, who gave us guidance for what journalists and news leaders can do to prevent, recognize and contend with it.

How Colorado Community Media relaunched 24 sites in six months (Better News)

Last spring, Colorado Community Media embarked on the messy process of relaunching its digital sites. That meant bringing 24 separate websites under a common architecture to bring about a cleaner experience, easier content sharing, faster publishing, better search capabilities and additional multimedia elements. Amalie Nash, the head of transformation for the National Trust for Local News, which owns CCM, details the process.

Trust tip: Three strategies for confronting news avoidance (Trusting News)

Newsrooms need to address the disconnect between the value and service its journalists provide and how news consumers view it. Trusting News’ Mollie Muchna outlines three strategies to get there:

  • Investigate the question within the community through conversations with news avoiders. Those conversations can also increase trust, goodwill and likely financial support for news organizations.
  • Get your values, and your value, on the record to show people what they’re getting that they cannot get elsewhere. Once you identify that value, it could be shared through marketing materials, social media or newsletters.
  • Make products more accessible. “Far too often, news coverage is full of jargon and assumes the consumer has a certain level of knowledge or buy-in with a topic,” Muchna writes. “As journalists, we need to stop assuming people have contextual knowledge.”

+ Happening Thursday: Register for the first API + AP election coverage webinar, on AI, misinformation and other threats in the 2024 elections

+ Headed to the 2024 Local Journalism Researchers’ Workshop at Duke University next week? Connect with API’s Director of Inclusion and Audience Growth Letrell Crittenden, who is presenting on the impact of sustained DEI investment on local news coverage on Monday at 1:45 p.m., and Senior Applications Engineer Stephen Jefferson, who’s discussing geographic consistency and representation in local journalism on Tuesday at 11 a.m.

SPECIAL EDITION: Marketing for local news

March’s Need to Know series focuses on marketing for local news. Each week, Kamila Jambulatova, API’s senior communications manager, shares advice and exercises to help small teams effectively promote their journalism and offerings — from building out marketing and outreach plans to mapping your audience journey.

Building effective marketing plans

When it comes to marketing and outreach, there is always a seemingly endless list of tasks to get through. Managing and organizing those efforts can often fall down the priority list, prompting things to slip through the cracks. However, spending too much time setting processes prevents you from actually getting things done.

But keeping yourself organized when it comes to marketing efforts can ensure that you and your team don’t miss some critical opportunities to reach out and engage with your audiences.

So, where do we start? First, I’d encourage you to review your current process. If you have go-to Word docs, Excel templates, project management tools or to-do lists, determine whether they still serve you. No matter where you are at, I hope this exercise and template will help you improve your process.

I’ve been using a template for years and continue to update and iterate it based on the project. This is a great to-do list for folks like me who work in small teams, need to get things done fast and keep all the essential information in one spot.  Download the marketing and outreach template here.

Read Kamila’s full action plan here.


+ Crime stories drove readers to GoFundMe campaigns, only the victims didn’t exist (NBC News)

+ A view from Oregon: How do we keep local journalism alive? (Seattle Times)

+ Podcast: Exit interview — Kelly Ann Scott and the digital reinvention of Alabama Media Group (Local News Matters)

+ What went wrong at the Center for Public Integrity? (Dick Tofel’s Second Rough Draft, Substack)