Boston Globe in talks to print rival Boston Herald

AP News
Posted: May 11, 2011 5:31 PM
Boston Globe in talks to print rival Boston Herald

The Boston Globe and the Boston Herald said Wednesday they are negotiating a plan under which the Globe would print and distribute some editions of its tabloid rival.

Globe spokesman Bob Powers said that no agreement has been signed, but under the proposal the Herald would pay the Globe to print and deliver the newspaper in the Boston area.

A Herald statement said the newspaper must take steps to reduce its operating expenses. Those steps might include layoffs of Herald truck drivers.

Patrick Purcell, president and publisher of the Herald, met with representatives of Teamsters Local No. 259 to initiate discussions regarding a reorganization of the newspaper's Delivery Department, according to the Herald statement.

"Purcell presented the reasons for the need to change Delivery Department operations and stated that the Herald would be proposing severance packages for employees affected by the reorganization," the statement said. "Purcell stressed the need for expedited discussions about the Herald's plans and said he hoped the parties could reach agreement swiftly."

The proposal calls for the Globe to print and distribute Sunday through Thursday city editions of the Herald, and all Saturday editions. Other editions would be published at the Dow Jones & Co. plant in Chicopee in western Massachusetts.

The newspapers' editorial departments would remain independent.

No further details of the proposal, like how much the Herald would pay the Globe, were made public.

Dan Kennedy, an assistant journalism professor at Northeastern University, said the proposal sounds like a smart move for both sides given the changing media landscape and the need for media outlets to cut cost without affecting journalism standards.

Kennedy said it's also a sign that the Herald, long rumored to be closing, isn't going anywhere.

"If I had a dime every time someone said the Herald was going out of business during the last 30 years," said Kennedy, "I'd be a millionaire."