AP’s Ron Fournier is leaving journalism to work for an Internet startup (Ron, buddy: That was the 90s).

With the Associated Press’ stories running in newspapers all over the place, Ron’s significance cannot be overestimated. He was a ture journalism rockstar, which was most obvious during the 2004 election, when he earned the Merriman Smith Award for outstanding presidential coverage under deadline pressure (case in point: he wrote over 67 leads on election night for various stories and write-thrus).

It also can’t be overestimated how big of a loss this is for AP.

More of this will be learned later for sure…