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Johnston Press Adding BBC’s Gubbay As Its Digital Content Head

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Regional publisher Johnston Press is hiring an editorial online manager as its news digital content head (via HTFP).

Long-time BBC Sport online editor Alex Gubbay, who had recently become the BBC’s social media editor in January 2010, takes the position in June, working with JP’s digital and business development director Henry Faure Walker.

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Former AOL (NYSE: AOL) exec Lori Cunningham left as Johnston’s digital strategy director last summer. Walker was appointed in September.

Johnston Press last year trialled a paid content initiative but never implemented it beyond trial. Walker has been introducing more topical and geographical metadata to JP stories, against which to better target ads, in search of higher CPMs.

The company is amongst the UK’s largest local news publishers, but its websites could do with overhaul.