The Washington Post has examined partnerships occurring between media that, in other times, might have thought of themselves as competitors. Today they’re a source of (cheap?) content.
One example: The New York Times partners with The Discovery Channel (Discovery Times cable channel). On its web site, it partners with the Financial Times, CBS/Marketwatch, and the German weekly Der Spiegel.
The Times is not alone. Partnerships between television stations and newspapers are growing, as well as the newspaper-to-newspaper relationship evidenced by the Times. It allows companies to expand content without having to hire new journalists. The “c” word (convergence) isn’t mentioned, though.
There is a danger that consolidation could reduce the number of independent voices. Of course, that phenomena already exists. Just go to news.google.com and check out a hot story … one that has dozens of hits. You’ll see wire story after wire story.
But it is hard to identify the players without a playing card.