Major Newspaper Chain Drops Associated Press

( – Media giants Gannett and McClatchy, who control over 200 news outlets, including the Miami Herald and USA Today, have cut ties with The Associated Press (AP) amid financial pressures. Gannett, America’s most prominent media organization, has worked with AP for over a century, and its spokesperson, Lark-Marie Anton, said the decision to end the contract will allow Gannett to invest internally.

In a memo from the organization’s chief content officer, Kristin Roberts, editors were instructed to cease using AP material from March 25, including stories, videos, and images. AP said McClatchy ended its relationship with the agency days later.

It is unknown how much Gannett paid AP every year, but experts say it would likely have been millions, meaning the relationship’s end will significantly impact the Associated Press. However, David Bauder of AP says this is not a fatal blow because it has “diversified its services,” and only 10% of its current revenue comes from newspaper outlets.

Kristen Roberts’ memo suggests that Gannett intends to use its own journalists to cover stories that it would once have purchased from AP, which has reporters in 100 countries and every American state. Roberts stated that the funds saved would permit internal journalists to report more extensively.

Gannett has experienced financial pressures for some years, and its workforce has dropped by 47% since 2020. Furthermore, publically available data reveals that it has not had a profitable year since 2018, and profits have dropped by $1.03 billion since then.

McClatchy’s senior vice president, Kathy Vetter, said her organization “will no longer pay millions for content that serves less than 1 percent of our readers.” Like Gannett, McClatchy intends to use the saved funds to expand its internal journalism.

However, associated Press spokesperson Lauren Easton hinted to the New York Times that the two media titans may simply be angling for a better contract. She told the Times she was “shocked and disappointed” by their decisions and hoped these could be reversed.

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