MACLEAN, Virginia: America's three biggest newspaper publishers - known collectively as GMT (Gannett, McLatchy and Tribune) - are negotiating an alliance to jointly sell online ads across the hundreds of websites linked to their titles.

The aim is to provide national advertisers with a one-stop shop for buying targeted web coverage coast-to-coast.

Code-named Open Network, the planned alliance marks a determined bid to recoup the legions of national advertisers who have defected to the internet. Most currently buy the bulk of their online display ads from the three major portals: Yahoo, AOL and MSN.

Yahoo also recently announced its intention to work with seven other newspaper publishers to create a similar one-stop-shopping venue for advertisers.

Although the GMT alliance is not yet engraved in stone, the trio hope to ink a deal before the advent of spring.

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    Data sourced from Wall Street Journal Online; additional content by WARC staff