SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- The Bay Area News Project, a new non-profit media organization, and The New York Times announced today that the two organizations are moving forward with a content collaboration. Under the agreement, Bay Area News Project journalists will provide branded news to The New York Times for its San Francisco Bay Area editions on Friday and Sunday.
The New York Times's Bay Area section was launched in October 2009 and currently features editorial coverage written by The Times's San Francisco news bureau and other contributors.
"This agreement with the Bay Area News Project is another big step for The Times toward two goals: helping meet the demand for the highest quality local reporting in places around the country where it is getting harder to come by, and finding ways to collaborate with trusted providers to get that job done," said Bill Keller, executive editor of The New York Times.
"Our aim is to roll out expanded local reports in several key markets around the country, working with local journalists and news organizations in a collaborative way," said Scott Heekin-Canedy, president and general manager of The New York Times. The Times has a similar arrangement in Chicago with the nonprofit Chicago News Cooperative. "This approach is designed to enhance the print experience for readers and strengthen our subscriber retention," Mr. Heekin-Canedy said.
In related news, The Bay Area News Project also announced its new C.E.O. Lisa Frazier and Editor-in-Chief Jonathan Weber. The News Project's publicly-supported and stand-alone newsroom will consist of at least 15 journalists during the new media outlet's first year. In addition to providing content to The New York Times, the News Project is developing a Web site and other platforms that will provide original reporting on a wide range of Bay Area civic and community issues.
"We believe that Jonathan Weber, a talented journalist with a world of rich experience, will build a team that can provide a superior local report for readers of The Times in the Bay Area," Mr. Keller said. "And our agreement with the Bay Area News Project assures that his newsroom will be strictly independent, apolitical and uninfluenced by the generous donors who are making this effort possible."
Mr. Weber, former co-founder and editor-in-chief of The Industry Standard and former reporter and editor for the LA Times, said: "We're looking forward to working with one of the world's leading editorial brands to deliver hard-hitting news and in-depth editorial coverage focused on the San Francisco Bay Area - one of the most intellectually curious, innovative and industrious areas of the country."
"We are excited to start producing content about the Bay Area for the Bay Area, published in The New York Times," said Bay Area News Project C.E.O. Lisa Frazier. "Our print collaboration with The Times assists our sustainability model, and extends the reach of our content in the Bay Area. I am appreciative of Tom Carley, Bill Keller and the rest of their teams for all of their support over the last few months as we got the News Project up and running. We are looking forward to a successful collaboration."
The Hellman Family Foundation has provided initial seed funding for the Bay Area News Project; other support has come from the Knight Foundation and community members interested in funding quality journalism for the Bay Area. Investment banking firm Greenhill & Co., law firm Jones Day, and philanthropic advisory firm Hirsch & Associates, LLC have advised Warren Hellman and his working group on the formation of the entity.
About the Bay Area News Project
The Bay Area News Project is a publicly supported news organization focused on providing high-quality, original coverage of Bay Area civic and community news. The locally produced, professional news organization plans to leverage broad collaborations and new digital technologies to provide Bay Area news that reflects the region's dynamic social and cultural diversity. Coverage will include government and public policy, education, the arts and cultural affairs, the environment, and neighborhood news. The News Project is currently a fiscally sponsored project of Community Initiatives, a 501(c)(3) organization that enables individuals and groups, working together, to create and invest in projects that benefit the public.
For more information, please visit www.bayareanewsproject.org.
About The New York Times Company
The New York Times Company, a leading media company with 2008 revenues of $2.9 billion, includes The New York Times, the International Herald Tribune, The Boston Globe, 15 other daily newspapers and more than 50 Web sites, including NYTimes.com, Boston.com and About.com. The Company's core purpose is to enhance society by creating, collecting and distributing high-quality news, information and entertainment.
SOURCE The Bay Area News Project