Media World: Going local, the latest newspaper strategy, is nothing new

The New York Times Co. (NYT) plans to launch a local edition in Chicago, competing against the bankrupt Tribune Co. (TRBCQ)'s Chicago Tribune and Sun-Times Media Group (SUTMQ)'s Chicago Sun-Times. The New York–based company said last month it will start an edition in San Francisco, where News Corp. (NWS)'s The Wall Street Journal also plans a local edition, and where the remaining "real" hometown daily, The San Francisco Chronicle, has struggled for years.

The attraction for newspapers to go local is obvious: it's where they think the most ad dollars can be had. The Times counts on national advertising, which can be more economically sensitive than local advertising, more than most dailies. It's the same logic that drives Walt Disney Co. (DIS)'s ESPN to develop local sports Web sites for the Chicago and Boston markets, with other sites anticipated for New York City, Los Angeles, Dallas, and Pittsburgh, according to paidContent.Org.