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There's a potentially big move afoot in this country's ongoing Media Monopoly game, with at least one and possibly both of the companies owning Detroit's two daily papers reportedly looking to get in on the action. When we say reportedly, however, we're not talking about any news we could find in either Detroit daily.

Last year, Gannett, previous owner of the The Detroit News, bought the Free Press, and a Denver-based outfit called MediaNews Group took over the News. You know all that. But what you don't know, at least if you rely on either of those papers to keep you up on things, is that MediaNews is definitely taking a serious look at buying Knight Ridder, the country's second largest newspaper chain and former owner of the Freep.

Privately held MediaNews, the country's seventh largest newspaper chain, is said to be working with three equity firms to come up with the cash necessary to buy KR, which is valued at $4.2 billion.

It's also being reported that Gannett, which owns more than 100 papers nationwide, is interested in Knight Ridder.

How do we know this? Our info comes from the pages of the San Jose Mercury News, Knight Ridder's flagship paper.

Here's something even more interesting: The Mercury News' Pete Carey is also reporting that the Newspaper Guild-Communications Workers of America labor union is "exploring either a 'worker-friendly' buyout of Knight Ridder or partnering with one of the buyers to form an employee-owned corporation."

We're tempted to slam the locals for failing to give any ink to this story, but we'll cut them a little slack this time. The way we see it, there probably just wasn't any room in either of the papers recently because they've been devoting countless column inches to another scoop: the Super Bowl's coming to town. We'll give them that one — you heard it there first.

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