Allbritton to Launch Ambitious Local D.C. Site

By Andrew Gauthier 


The parent company of POLITICO, ABC 7 and NewsChannel 8 plans to launch an ambitious new website next year to cover local news for the Washington area, executives said Wednesday.

Allbritton Communications Co. plans a staff of roughly 50 for the website, which will share content with the two television stations. Launch is tentatively set for the spring. A name has not yet been chosen.

At a time when news companies are scrambling to appeal to an increasingly mobile and fickle population while also downsizing, the plan will serve as a high-profile test of the ability of new media to reach audiences that have been fleeing traditional outlets.

And it will test whether the lessons learned from POLITICO, which achieved success in its niche virtually overnight, can be successfully applied to new areas of coverage.

Robert L. Allbritton, chairman and CEO of Allbritton Communications, said in a staff memo that the website will harness the power of the Web, social media and new technology to connect Washingtonians with each other and with the information that matters most in their family, civic and work lives. More…