If all goes as hoped, in coming months St. Louis Public Radio (SLPR) and the St. Louis Beacon will formally merge their two newsrooms. It will be the first time a public radio station with a staff of journalists has combined its operations with another daily-news producing outlet.

This is not an easy thing to do. For one, St. Louis Public Radio is owned by the University of Missouri’s Board of Curators, and top university officials must sign off on the deal. For another, both the Beacon and the station have strong brands, their own sponsors, their own content management systems, their own organizational charts — not to mention their own definitions of news and ways of producing it.

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