Hearst Ramps Up Connecticut Coverage to Compete With Alden’s Hartford Courant

From a story on poynter.org by Rick Edmonds headlined “Hearst Connecticut ramps up coverage of Hartford County, home of Alden’s Hartford Courant”:

Hearst’s Connecticut operation is adding 13 new positions — 11 of them journalists — and ramping up coverage of Hartford County, the home base of The Hartford Courant.

The Courant is one of the Tribune Publishing papers bought last summer by hedge fund Alden Global Capital. Hearst’s move is not framed as a news-war attack on the Courant, but the company did offer a hint of that.

“Our goal is to double down on the quality journalism we produce daily and increase our coverage, including in areas where we see a void of local news reporting in communities across the state,” said Mike DeLuca, publisher and president of Hearst Connecticut Media Group.

As I wrote in August, Hearst expanded from a base of eight dailies to 160 news positions and a statewide site, CT Insider. (Several other papers and their digital sites have been branching out statewide, including The Post and Courier in Charleston, South Carolina; The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette and The Star Tribune in Minneapolis.

If Hearst is targeting the Courant, that’s another trend — invading what had been the turf of Alden papers as loss of staff and an enfeebled news report is expected. The nonprofit Baltimore Banner’s launch is imminent, and the merger of the Chicago Sun-Times and WBEZ/Chicago Public Media is at hand.

Next up Allentown, Fort Lauderdale, Orlando and the Tidewater Virginia papers?

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