If you don’t think the newspaper business is in dire straits, consider this.The Bergen (N.J.) Record, The Newark (N.J.) Star-Ledger and The (N.Y.) Daily News, once arch-enemies in the print business, have embarked upon a content-sharing agreement that also includes the Albany Times-Union and the Buffalo News. The papers have “formed the Northeast Consortium, a cooperative arrangement which will enhance each publication’s coverage in the region by exchanging articles, photographs and graphics among the newspapers,” according to a release. The agreement kicks in in May. The Daily News, The Record and The Ledger have long been competitors in the metropolitan area for stories, readership and reporters, yet now they are teaming up to stay alive. “We are excited to collaborate with these other papers,” Stephen Borg, Record publisher, stated in a release. “They excel in many areas. Record readers will benefit from expanded coverage. The Record will hopefully benefit the other papers in areas where we excel, like our coverage of the Meadowlands.” From what I’m told, The Record says this agreement doesn’t mean any jobs will be lost, but it’s hard to imagine all of the papers keeping separate beat writers for the local pro teams like the Mets, Yankees, Giants, Jets, Knicks, Nets, Devils and Rangers. Seems more likely each paper would retain columnists who brand them and give them identity, while sharing beat coverage…Only time will tell how it actually plays out.