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ABC News, Yahoo Team Up For Online Partnership

The Huffington Post    
First Posted: 10/03/11 09:32 AM ET Updated: 12/03/11 05:12 AM ET

ABC News announced Monday that it is teaming up with Yahoo News to become what it calls the top digital news source.

Almost all of the network's top talent was on "Good Morning America" for the announcement. The two sides are not officially merging, but their traffic will be reported together and the partnership will be, to say the least, very deep.

ABC News now becomes the chief news source on Yahoo, and the two editorial groups will collaborate on coverage and integrate several news bureaus. In addition, "GMA" will have its own channel on Yahoo News, and ABC News personalities will be seen regularly online. For instance, George Stephanopoulos will interview President Obama live online Monday afternoon. "This Week" anchor Christiane Amanpour will also have a weekly series, and Sawyer, Barbara Walters and "Nightline" anchor Bill Weir will produce original online content.

"Game-changer" was the word of the morning for ABC. "GMA" executive producer James Goldston tweeted the word before the announcement was made, and Diane Sawyer called the partnership "game-changing" on air.

It certainly anchors ABC News' digital footprint to a much larger online ship. Yahoo gets nearly four times as much online traffic as its new partner. Now, with the two teaming up, the combined traffic will top 100 million unique users per month.

In an email to staff, ABC News president Ben Sherwood said that the two sides have been working "for months" on the partnership.

The new team released a web video Monday morning touting the deal, pointing out that, combined, the ABC-Yahoo partnership will draw more traffic than ABC's network competitors get put together. (The video notably places Yahoo's logo first, perhaps acknowledging its Web supremacy.)

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