|Formerly||United Media Enterprises|
|Fate||Merged into Universal Uclick|
|Founded||1978, as the merger of United Features and NEA|
|Services||editorial columns and comic strips|
|Parent||E. W. Scripps Company|
|Divisions|| Newspaper Enterprise Association (est. 1902)|
United Feature Syndicate (est. 1919)
United Media was a large editorial column and comic strip newspaper syndication service based in the United States, owned by the E. W. Scripps Company, that operated from 1978 to 2011. It syndicated 150 comics and editorial columns worldwide. Its core businesses were the United Feature Syndicate and the Newspaper Enterprise Association.
E. W. Scripps started his newspaper career in the 1885, and owned 22 newspapers by 1910. In 1897, he created two companies, the Scripps-McRae Press Association and the Scripps News Association. In 1907, he combined a number of news providers into United Press Associations as a rival to Associated Press.
On June 2, 1902, the new Newspaper Enterprise Association (NEA), based in Cleveland, Ohio, started as a news report service for different Scripps-owned newspapers. It started selling content to non-Scripps owned newspapers in 1907, and by 1909, it became a more general syndicate, offering comics, pictures and features as well.At that time, it had some 100 features available.
United Feature Syndicate was formed in 1919.It became a dominant player in the syndication market in the early 1930s. In March 1930, United Features acquired the Metropolitan Newspaper Service (ostensibly from the Bell Syndicate). And in late February 1931, Scripps acquired the New York World , which controlled the syndication arms of the Pulitzer company: World Feature Service and Press Publishing Co. (which unlike other syndicates were owned by the paper rather than being separate entities). An April 1933 article in Fortune described United Feature as one of the "Big Four" American syndicates (along with King Features Syndicate, Chicago Tribune Syndicate, and the Bell Syndicate). United Features and NEA both became successful distributors of newspaper comics in the 1930s.
In 1972, United Features Syndicate acquired and absorbed the North American Newspaper Alliance and the Bell-McClure Syndicate into its operations.
In May 1978 Scripps merged United Features and NEA to form United Media Enterprises (UM).
In 1992, United Media donated the Robert Roy Metz Collection of 83,034 original cartoons by 113 cartoonists to the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum.
In 1994, Jim Davis's company, Paws, Inc., purchased the rights to Garfield (including the strips from 1978 to 1993) from United Feature. The strip is currently distributed by Universal Press Syndicate, while rights for the strip remain with Paws.
On June 3, 2010, United Media sold their licensing arm, along with the rights to Peanuts and Dilbert , to Iconix Brand Group.
The Scripps Howard News Service (SHNS) (established 1917) was part of United Media; SHNS went defunct in 2013.
On February 24, 2011, United Media struck a distribution deal with Universal Uclick (now known as Andrews McMeel Syndication) for syndication of the company's 150 comic strip and news features, which became effective on June 1 of that year.Of the more than 40 comic strips United Media transferred to Universal Uclick, about 75% of them were United Features strips (as opposed to Newspaper Enterprise Association strips). While United Media effectively ceased to exist, Scripps still maintains copyrights and intellectual property rights.
These were published on United Media's site and/or Comics.com; many moved to GoComics:
William Boyd Watterson II is a retired American cartoonist and the author of the comic strip Calvin and Hobbes, which was syndicated from 1985 to 1995. Watterson stopped drawing Calvin and Hobbes at the end of 1995 with a short statement to newspaper editors and his readers that he felt he had achieved all he could in the medium. Watterson is known for his negative views on licensing and comic syndication; his efforts to expand and elevate the newspaper comic as an art-form; and his move back into private life after he stopped drawing Calvin and Hobbes. Watterson was born in Washington, D.C., and grew up in Chagrin Falls, Ohio. The suburban Midwestern United States setting of Ohio was part of the inspiration for Calvin and Hobbes.
FoxTrot is an American comic strip written and illustrated by Bill Amend. The strip launched on April 10, 1988, and it ran seven days a week until December 30, 2006. Since then, FoxTrot has strictly appeared on Sundays.
Print syndication distributes news articles, columns, political cartoons, comic strips and other features to newspapers, magazines and websites. The syndicates offer reprint rights and grant permissions to other parties for republishing content of which they own and/or represent copyrights. Other terms for the service include a newspaper syndicate, a press syndicate, and a feature syndicate.
Stephan Thomas Pastis is an American cartoonist and former lawyer who is the creator of the comic strip Pearls Before Swine. He also writes children's chapter books, commencing with the release of Timmy Failure: Mistakes Were Made all the way through the seventh book, It's the End When I Say It's the End, which debuted at #4 on The New York Times Best Seller list for Children's Middle Grade Books.
King Features Syndicate, Inc., is a print syndication company owned by Hearst Communications that distributes about 150 comic strips, newspaper columns, editorial cartoons, puzzles, and games to nearly 5,000 newspapers worldwide. King Features Syndicate is a unit of Hearst Holdings, Inc., which combines the Hearst Corporation's cable-network partnerships, television programming and distribution activities, and syndication companies. King Features' affiliate syndicates are North America Syndicate and Cowles Syndicate. Each week, Reed Brennan Media Associates, a unit of Hearst, edits and distributes more than 200 features for King Features.
The E. W. Scripps Company is an American broadcasting company founded in 1878 as a chain of daily newspapers by Edward Willis "E. W." Scripps. It was also formerly a media conglomerate. The company is headquartered inside the Scripps Center in Cincinnati, Ohio. Its corporate motto is "Give light and the people will find their own way", which is symbolized by the media empire's longtime lighthouse logo.
United Feature Syndicate is a large editorial column and comic strip newspaper syndication service based in the United States and established in 1919. Originally part of E. W. Scripps Company, it was part of United Media from 1978 to 2011, and is now a division of Andrews McMeel Syndication. United Features has syndicated many notable comic strips, including Peanuts, Garfield, Li'l Abner, Dilbert, Nancy, and Marmaduke.
The Newspaper Enterprise Association (NEA) is an editorial column and comic strip newspaper syndication service based in the United States and established in 1902. The oldest syndicate still in operation, the NEA was originally a secondary news service to the Scripps Howard News Service; it later evolved into a general syndicate best known for syndicating the comic strips Alley Oop, Our Boarding House, Freckles and His Friends, The Born Loser, Frank and Ernest, and Captain Easy / Wash Tubbs; in addition to an annual Christmas comic strip. Along with United Feature Syndicate, the NEA was part of United Media from 1978 to 2011, and is now a division of Andrews McMeel Syndication. The NEA once selected college All-America teams, and presented awards in professional football.
Universal Press Syndicate (UPS), a subsidiary of Andrews McMeel Universal, was an independent press syndicate. It distributed lifestyle and opinion columns, comic strips and other content. Popular columns include Dear Abby, Ann Coulter, Roger Ebert and News of the Weird. Founded in 1970, it was merged in July 2009 with Uclick to form Universal Uclick.
Steve McGarry is a British cartoonist whose work includes the comic strips Badlands, Pop Culture / Biographic, Trivquiz, KidTown, and Mullets.
The Duplex is a comic strip by Glenn McCoy and now his brother Gary McCoy, syndicated by Universal Press Syndicate/Universal Uclick/Andrews McMeel Syndication since April 1993.
A comic strip syndicate functions as an agent for cartoonists and comic strip creators, placing the cartoons and strips in as many newspapers as possible on behalf of the artist. A syndicate can annually receive thousands of submissions, from which only two or three might be selected for representation. In some cases, the work will be owned by the syndicate as opposed to the creator. The Guinness World Record for the world's most syndicated strip belongs to Jim Davis' Garfield, which at that point (2002) appeared in 2,570 newspapers, with 263 million readers worldwide.
In the Bleachers is a comic strip that comments on, and lampoons, sports. It was created in 1985 by American cartoonist/filmmaker Steve Moore and is currently syndicated internationally by Andrews McMeel Syndication.
Uclick LLC was an American corporation selling "digital entertainment content" for the desktop, the web and mobile phones. Uclick operated several consumer websites, including the comic strip and editorial cartoon site GoComics and the puzzle and casual game sites ThePuzzleSociety.com and UclickGames.com.
The Washington Post Writers Group (WPWG), a division of The Washington Post News Service & Syndicate, is a press syndication service composed of opinion journalists, editorial cartoonists, comic strips and columnists. The service is operated by The Washington Post.
Andrews McMeel Syndication is an American content syndicate which provides syndication in print, online and on mobile devices for a number of lifestyle and opinion columns, comic strips and cartoons and various other content. Some of its best-known products include Dear Abby, Doonesbury, Ziggy, Garfield, Ann Coulter, Richard Roeper and News of the Weird. A subsidiary of Andrews McMeel Universal, it is headquartered in Kansas City, Missouri. It was formed in 2009 and was given its current name in January 2017.
Shortcuts is a syndicated Sunday strip by artist and educator Jeff Harris, which is distributed by Andrews McMeel Syndication via the Newspaper Enterprise Association.
Chronicle Features was the syndication arm of the San Francisco Chronicle. Syndicating comic strips, newspaper columns, and editorial features, it operated from 1962 to c. 1998. The syndicate was known for the offbeat comic strips it championed, such as Gary Larson's The Far Side, Dan Piraro's Bizarro, and the editorial cartoons of Ted Rall. The service was acquired by Universal Press Syndicate in 1997 and went defunct soon after.
Editors Press Service (EPS) was a print syndication service of columns and comic strips that was in operation from 1933 to 2010. It was notable for being the first U.S. company to actively syndicate material internationally. Despite surviving for more than seven decades, EPS was never a large operation, characterized by comic strip historian Allan Holtz as a "hole-in-the-wall outfit."