Associated Press


Associated Press
(abbr AP)
the oldest and largest US news service, with offices all over the world. Its members include newspapers and television and radio stations. They collect the news and AP sends it to all members. The service began in 1848 and is a non-profit company.

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      (AP), cooperative news agency (wire service), the oldest and largest of those in the United States and long the largest and one of the preeminent news agencies in the world. Its beginnings trace to 1848, when six New York City daily newspapers pooled their efforts to finance a telegraphic relay of foreign news brought by ships to Boston, the first U.S. port of call for westbound transatlantic ships. In 1856 the service took the name of the New York Associated Press, a mutual, which sold its service to various regional newspaper groups. Pressure from the regional customers forced changes in its control, and in 1892 the modern AP was set up under the laws of Illinois. The Chicago Inter Ocean, a newspaper that did not have AP membership, brought an anti-monopoly suit in 1900, and AP moved to New York, where association laws permitted the group to continue its strict control of membership, including blackballing of applicants for membership by existing members. In the early 1940s, Marshall Field III, who had established the Chicago Sun, fought his exclusion from the AP service. Prosecution under the federal antitrust powers ended the AP's restrictive practices.

      In the early 1980s, AP's annual operating budget, swollen by the cost of installing and maintaining electronic equipment for satellite relay of radioteleprinter and other services, exceeded $170,000,000, by far the largest of any such agency in the world. Its staff of some 2,500 reporters and correspondents, in bureaus in more than 100 U.S. and 50 world cities, collected and relayed to member papers news from about 100 countries. Staff efforts were augmented by those of more than 100,000 reporters of member papers. The agency had more than 6,500 newspaper clients in the early 1980s. For many years, AP leased more than 400,000 miles of telephone wire to carry its transmissions, but its use of radioteleprinters—begun in 1952—began mitigating the need for leased wires, a trend that increasing employment of satellite transmissions will carry on as subscribers install appropriate antennas.

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Universalium. 2010.

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