An NBC affiliate in Los Angeles reports that The Associated Press is preparing to crack down on websites that merely copy-and-paste AP stories online without paying for them. Dean Singleton, chief executive of Denver-based MediaNews Group and AP chairman, told board members at an annual meeting in San Diego, “We can no longer stand by and watch others walk off with our work under some very misguided, unfounded legal theories.”

In a phone interview with, Singleton further warned that online pay-for-news models may be on the horizon. Newspapers are struggling and cutting costs, including the wire news offered by the 162-year-old AP news cooperative, notes The Wall Street Journal, adding that AP expects about one-third less revenue from U.S. newspaper members between 2008 and 2010.

Meanwhile, MediaNews, which owns The Denver Post and scads of other newspapers around Colorado and the nation, has struck a deal with its creditors, according to Editor & Publisher, giving the company time to grapple with its debt.

The last semblances of The Post’s major daily competitor, the late Rocky Mountain News, have recently begun disappearing from Denver’s streets, as this photo by 5280’s Jeff Panis reveals.