The Daily News

Daily News, the newspaper of record for New York City and Long Island, is an American tabloid that features national and local news, sports coverage, celebrity gossip, horoscopes, comics, classified ads and an opinion section. The newspaper is read by 2.7 million people every day.

The Daily News began publication in 1919, the product of a merger between Joseph Medill Patterson’s Chicago Tribune and a competitor from New York City. The paper’s early years saw a steady rise in readership; by the mid-20th century, its distribution had reached 2.4 million. In its heyday, the Daily News was considered to be the world’s best-read newspaper. In addition to intensive city news coverage, the paper featured large photographs and highlighted political wrongdoing (such as the Teapot Dome scandal) and social intrigue (like Wallis Simpson’s romance with King Edward VIII, which led to the latter’s abdication).

From its inception, the Daily News has been a staunchly Republican publication, largely owing to its founder, Robert C. Maxwell. As a result, the paper has often clashed with city and state Democratic leadership. In the 1970s, this stance changed as the paper moved towards a more centrist stance, with the tagline “The Eyes, the Ears, the Honest Voice of New York”.

In 1978, the Daily News experienced one of its darkest days, losing 145,000 subscribers during a multi-union strike. Despite this, the newspaper was able to return to profitability and begin repositioning itself as a more serious tabloid.

By the 1980s, the News had expanded into television and radio. The Daily News was an early adopter of the Associated Press wirephoto service and had a large staff of photographers; it also owned WPIX, which was given call letters based on the News’ nickname as “New York’s Picture Paper”, and later purchased what became FM radio station WFAN-FM, which still holds its studios in the former Daily News Building.

The newspaper’s circulation continued to decline in the following decades. In 2017, the Daily News halved its editorial staff and was on the verge of extinction when Tronc, the owner of the newspaper’s former parent company, stepped in and bought it for one dollar. Since then, the News has struggled to regain its position as a leading city and national news source. Each Daily News article includes comprehension and critical thinking questions. The questions are matched with the relevant “Background” and “Resources” sections to help students understand the context of each story. Students can sign up to receive a FREE Daily News email that contains these questions each day. To learn more, click here.