Online news venture NewsRight names interim CEO

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Associated Press

Posted on July 20, 2012 at 6:01 PM

Updated Saturday, Jul 21 at 11:00 AM

NEW YORK (AP) — NewsRight, a company created by The Associated Press and newspaper publishers to track the unlicensed use of news stories on the Internet, said Friday that CEO David Westin is stepping down.

Westin will become an adviser to NewsRight, the company said. Prior to accepting the chief executive position last spring, Westin, 59, was the president of ABC News for 14 years.

Srinandan Kasi has been named by the company's board to be interim president and chief executive officer. Kasi was most recently NewsRight's chief operating officer.

NewsRight's aim is to turn unauthorized publishers of content into licensed customers. Westin accepted the chief executive role for a limited period to get the venture started, the company said. It began operating in January and secured its first content licensing deal with media monitoring firm Moreover Technologies Inc. in March.

NewsRight's 29 members include Hearst Newspapers, The McClatchy Co., The New York Times Co., and The Washington Post Co.

NewsRight board chair Bob Nutting, the CEO of Ogden Newspapers, said Kasi has been a critical part of NewsRight since it was formed by the AP in October 2010.

Before joining NewsRight, Kasi was vice president, general counsel and secretary of the AP.

"I've worked with both David and Sri for many years, and I know this will be a smooth transition for NewsRight," said Gary Pruitt, president of The Associated Press. "David has given the venture the strategic direction it needed, and Sri's long history with the AP and the news industry means he will be able to take that strategy and move it forward."

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