'All-platform journalist' installed in areas

Defying the current trend of budget-cutting in newsgathering operations, CNN said it will expand its domestic operations by opening one-person shops in 10 cities across the country.

The cabler, which already has 10 traditional news bureaus in the U.S., will install an “all-platform journalist” in Columbus, Ohio; Denver; Houston; Las Vegas; Minneapolis; Orlando, Fla.; Philadelphia; Phoenix; Raleigh-Durham, N.C.; and Seattle, according to Nancy Lane, senior veep of newsgathering for CNN/U.S.

An all-platform journalist will be one who typically carries “a handheld camera, a laptop, an air card, a satellite phone and maybe some lights,” Lane said. “This will make them more nimble than having to travel with a full load of traditional news gear.”

Each reporter will provide content for CNN’s outlets not just on television but also for Web, radio and mobile programming, Lane added.

The cabler will be looking for partnerships with existing media — either TV, print or universities — in the 10 new cities. So far, only one new operation is up and running: in Minneapolis, with CNN’s local TV affiliate there. Lane hopes to have three or four more of the new operations running before the end of the year, with the rest coming online by the end of the first quarter next year.

Lane declined to say how much the expansion is costing CNN, but did observe that “this is not a cost-savings measure. We are spending money to make this happen. There’s a heavy upfront investment.”

CNN has full bureaus in Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, New Orleans, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco and D.C.

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