Associated Press bends before it breaks

The planned rate structure for the Associated Press was suspended Thursday and a board meeting has directed a full review of membership policies.

Kirk LaPointe writes on his mediamanager blog:

decisions Thursday are good news for organizations looking to keep
costs controlled as their revenues decline in the U.S. Without those
changes, departure from AP was likely for several significant
companies, which would have in turn weakened the newsgathering
capabilities of the venerable wire service. The board meeting
clearly attempts to mollify the immediate cost challenges and review
policies in time to keep the cooperative intact during the notice

According to an AP story, members will be given access to the AP feed without additional
fees that had been scheduled to take effect in 2009. AP promised about $9
million in cuts, on top of the $21 million previously announced.

Papers including those in the Tribune chain (such as the Los Angeles Times and
Chicago Tribune), had already given the required two-years notice of departure.