By: Lucia Moses

But No Marriage Anytime Soon

New York Daily News Co-Publisher Mortimer B. Zuckerman says he’s ‘very
happy’ running an independent newspaper and doesn’t foresee reviving
discussions with its rival New York Post about sharing operations to cut

‘We had a few brief talks,’ Zuckerman says. ‘It didn’t go anywhere. We
haven’t had talks for months. From our point of view, it makes more sense to
be independent. I love the Daily News , and I want to work on it.’

The Wall Street Journal first reported Friday that the tabloids, famous for
their snappy headlines, had discussed combining some operations. Zuckerman
tells E&P the talks were initiated by the Post , although Post Publisher Ken
Chandler says the Daily News made the first move, asking if the Post would be
interested in discussing a joint operating agreement.

The privately owned Daily News has weathered bankruptcy, union conflicts, and
cash-flow problems over the past decade. It lost money in 1998, despite a
$19-million personal contribution from Zuckerman. The Post , owned by Rupert
Murdoch’s News Corp., doesn’t release financial figures but reportedly is losing

In one of a shrinking number of competitive newspaper markets, the Daily News is
winning the circulation war, but in the six months ended Sept. 30, daily sales were
down 3% to 701,831 while the Post gained 0.15% to 438,158.

A collaboration might make financial sense, but is it realistic? ‘There’s no way
the boss, Rupert, would do a deal to save Morty,’ a Post staffer says. ‘He just
loves running the paper.’


Lucia Moses (luciam@mediainfo.com ) is associate editor for
Editor & Publisher magazine.

(c) Copyright 2000, Editor & Publisher

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