When The Washington Post announced in mid-March that it would provide free digital access to subscribers of a half-dozen local papers around the country, the consensus take was clear: After years of hesitation, the Post, under Jeff Bezos, was finally looking to “go national” in a big way.
The project is indeed important for the Post. But if it pans out, it could be pretty significant for those local papers, too, by offering one way to put a high-quality local-national news bundle back together–though not everyone involved would describe the partnership in quite those terms.
Under the arrangement, subscribers of six papers–The Dallas Morning News, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Minneapolis Star Tribune, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, The Honolulu Star-Advertiser, and The Blade of Toledo, OH–will get digital-subscriber access to the Post‘s website and apps once the pilot program launches in May. The local papers get an extra benefit to offer subscribers; the Post gets greater national reach, a local marketing boost, and a chance to build relationships with people who are already devoted news readers. No money changes hands.
Click here to read more.