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The AP is doubling down on its local news experiment called StoryShare, which helped newsrooms quickly share information around COVID, AP deputy managing editor for U.S. News Noreen Gillespie tells Axios.

The big picture: There are now more than 130 newsrooms participating in the program across geographic networks in Colorado, Upstate New York, Oregon, New England, West Virginia, Illinois, and more.

  • The AP hopes to have 20 of these "networks up and running by the end of 2021," Gillespie says.

In coming months, the network will expand from geographic networks to topical ones.

  • Newsrooms will be able to create networks where they can share stories, photos, videos, etc. around topics as specific as a single storm or as broad as something like gun control or climate change.
  • The program, initially funded via a grant from the Google News Initiative, is facilitated by the AP, but the participating newsrooms in the networks decide how much they want to share.

What's next: The networks are available for free for local newsrooms that are AP clients or non-profits. Non-AP customers can access the networks through grants or a fee.

  • "Down the road, we could address monetization, but right now this is about giving customers the capability to launch networks and improve coverage."

The bottom line: "There are moments when we need to prioritize collaboration over competition," Gillespie says.

Go deeper: Local news moves to the inbox

Go deeper

Ex-Theranos CEO describes alleged abuse by former boyfriend and company exec

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

On her fourth day of trial testimony, ex-Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes described her 10-year romantic relationship with former president Ramesh "Sunny" Balwani as controlling, and said he would sometimes "force me to have sex with him when I didn’t want to."

Why it matters: While Balwani has also been similarly charged with fraud, the two are being tried separately, in part because some of Holmes' defense hinges on blaming him.

Amazon ordered to redo union vote in Alabama

Photo: Patrick Pleul/picture alliance via Getty Images

A U.S. National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) official on Monday called for a re-vote in a union election at an Amazon warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama.

Why it matters: The move could set the stage for another organizing drive at the e-commerce giant, which has, so far, fought off unionizing efforts in the U.S.

Pentagon to probe 2019 Syria strike after reports of dozens of civilian casualties

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin on Nov. 20. Photo: Mazen Mahdi/AFP via Getty Images

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has ordered a new investigation into a 2019 U.S. airstrike that killed around 80 people, including dozens of women and children in Syria, the New York Times reports.

Why it matters: The move comes after the Times reported this month that the Pentagon attempted to keep the strike and casualties under wraps, failing to investigate the decision behind it even after questions were raised internally.

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