BNET says San Francisco news hybrid is a no-go; Berkeley dean denies report

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The deal to start up a local nonprofit news organization in San Francisco (Current, Oct. 13, 2009) has fallen apart, according a BNET blog report quoting anonymous sources. KQED, the public radio and TV outlet that was to partner with the journalism school of the University of California in Berkeley to launch the organization with backing from philanthropist Warren Hellman, is beset by internal turmoil, reports David Weir, a journalist/blogger and former KQED exec. “Sources have told me that the various parties to the negotiations have not been able to come up with a consensus over how to run the new news organization, and as of today, financier Hellman’s patience has apparently run out.” UPDATE: Neil Henry, dean of the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism, tells Poynter Institute blogger Jim Romensko: “The Bay Area News Project is alive and well and ready to start business. The first board meeting will be conducted next week. We have secured an outstanding CEO and an extraordinary editor in chief whose names will be announced later this month. The only change since our announcement in September is that KQED will not play a role as a founding partner, but we look forward to its active participation.”