The Daily News is a local paper for New York City that has won numerous awards and earned an international reputation for its reporting. Its mission is to cover the news of the day in a way that’s palatable to time-starved readers. This includes the daily opinion column, sports, comics, classified ads and celebrity gossip. In its latest incarnation, it is available in digital form, and has been a pioneer in mobile news consumption. By 2016, it had a circulation of more than 200,000 copies a day.
Andrew Conte has taken the mystery of how a local newspaper goes out of business and made it the subject of his book, Death of the Daily News: How Local Journalism Survived and Changed. With empathy and wit, he examines the impact of losing a newspaper in a small town, and offers clues as to what the future holds.
As technology continues to close newsrooms and citizens turn to social media to get their news, local journalism has become more scarce. But despite the shrinking of the newsprint industry, there are still those who have the guts to take on the competition. Taking the helm is Andrew Conte, a veteran reporter with deep roots in local journalism. While the Daily News hasn’t been able to replicate its former glories, there are new and exciting ways for local citizens to keep informed.
The Daily News’ interactive edition allows readers to flip through pages as they browse their email, and even download an edition for offline reading. This isn’t just a retread of the traditional print version; it’s a sophisticated digital experience, integrating interactive features such as video and live tweets. Aside from bringing the news to the reader’s desktop, the Daily News also allows readers to share stories through email and Twitter, or by sharing them through the popular social media applications Facebook and Instagram. Lastly, the Daily News’ mobile apps make it easy for readers to catch up on the news in the palm of their hands, no matter what their location.
As the Daily News enters its eighth decade, the newsroom has witnessed a number of journalistic giants. From Mortimer B. Zuckerman, the company’s co-publisher, to Arthur “Frederick” Wolfe, a Pulitzer Prize winner, the Daily News has served as a voice of the voiceless, giving a voice to the afflicted, the downtrodden, and the forgotten.
As the author points out, the Daily News was the first tabloid newspaper in the United States. It began publication in 1919 as the Illustrated Daily News. Over the next two decades, the Daily News and its affiliated newspapers gained a reputation as a moderate liberal alternative to the right-wing New York Post. Throughout the late 1940s and early 1960s, the paper was the largest circulation newspaper in the country, a position it held for much of the next half century. Eventually, the Daily News was acquired by Chicago-based media conglomerate Tronc. In exchange for paying the $1.00 purchase price, Tronc agreed to assume all of the paper’s liabilities.