Jun Okumura writes (last item):
Nikkei, Yomiuri and Asahi are collaborating on a joint website, joint distribution, and joint emergency production. Other newspapers are also welcome to join the party. At the same time, MSN has ditched Mainichi (or is it the other way around?) for Sankei. Whatever. Just give the world a deeper archive, so I won’t have to keep copying the articles to my hard disk.
That would certainly be a grand coalition, much larger than any U.S. joint operating agreement (JOA) such as those between the Denver newspapers and others—this list is old, but it gives an idea. I haven’t been able to find more information on this with a quick search, but these papers could definitely use a better online archive presence, as Jun suggests. Factiva isn’t exactly free to all.
UPDATE 2007/10/4 19:11: Here is Yomiuri’s announcement on the emerging JOA. For the record, Yomiuri and Asahi are the world’s largest newspapers by circulation, and Nikkei is fourth. Their combined circulation is more than 30 million.