The Daily News

Founded in 1919, the Daily News considers itself “New York’s Hometown Newspaper,” informing everyday New Yorkers about their city and much more. It is known for zesty headlines (“Ford to City: Drop Dead” during the city’s financial woes in 1975), gossip, city coverage and star columnists (including Jimmy Breslin and Pete Hamill). The paper reached its peak circulation in 1947, when it was the nation’s largest newspaper; it still ranks as one of America’s top newspapers today. It has also been a leader in tabloid journalism, being the first to publish in that format and pioneering many features now commonplace among other publications.

Throughout the early- and mid-2000s, the Daily News struggled with declining print circulation, as well as shifts in news consumption and advertising spending that have wreaked havoc on newspapers nationwide. In addition, it has grappled with its muscular hometown tabloid rival, the News Corp-owned New York Post. Despite these challenges, the Daily News was still able to win several major awards for its journalism, including this year’s Pulitzer Prize for public service for its work uncovering how city officials were using an obscure law to illegally evict hundreds of low-income minorities from their homes.

In an attempt to improve its financial performance, the Daily News made several large changes. In the fall of 1993, it invested $60 million towards color presses, enabling it to match the visual quality of USA Today—the biggest daily newspaper in the country at the time—and reposition itself as a “serious tabloid.” The move helped stabilize the newspaper’s bottom line, and in 1994 it was reported that it was earning money for the first time in years.

By the late 1990s, however, the Daily News was again losing money, largely due to rising labor costs. The cost of union membership rose significantly, and by the end of the decade, the newspaper was absorbing about 44 percent of its income in labor expenses. In addition, the newspaper’s profits were being hit by competition from online news sites.

In 1998, publisher Joseph Medill Patterson sold the Daily News to Mort Zuckerman. Under Zuckerman’s ownership, the Daily News won a number of accolades, including the Pulitzer Prize for public service in 2002 for its work detailing how city authorities were using an obscure law to illegally oust hundreds of low-income minorities from homes. The Daily News is now owned by Tronc, a company that also owns the Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times. The Daily News continues to produce award-winning journalism and features New York City exclusives, politics and the latest Yankees, Mets, Giants and Jets news. It has over 3.4 million daily readers. The newspaper has a reputation for being as unbiased as possible.