Today Fast Search & Transfer (FAST) announced a major deal to be the platform for MediaNews Group, which publishes 50 dailies and 121 other publications in 12 states (with combined daily and Sunday circulation of 2.1 million and 2.4 million, respectively). Publicly traded FAST is the platform/search provider behind YellowPages.com and works with WashingtonPost.com, Citysearch, SuperPages and CareerBuilder, among many other sites.
This move toward a search-driven interface that can "surface" more newspaper content is a very positive step in making local newspaper sites more competitive as user destinations for more than just news (which is the hook and where it ends for many people today).
They've got so many partners and have been so successful, the company may soon run out of prospects.
Here's the full release.