The Yale Daily News

Founded in 1919 and the first successful tabloid newspaper in the United States, the Daily News dominated the New York City media market with sensational coverage of crime and scandal, lurid photographs, and entertaining cartoons. The News fought a fierce battle with its more conservative rival, the New York Post, to attract readers and advertisers. In its heyday in the mid-to-late 20th century, the Daily News had a circulation of nearly 2 million. The paper has continued to thrive into the 21st century, though its circulation remains far below its peak.

The Yale Daily News, or YDN, is the oldest college newspaper in the United States. Published every day that Yale is in session, it has served as a forum for debate and discussion for over 130 years. Many of its former students have gone on to careers in journalism and public service, including William F. Buckley, Lan Samantha Chang, John Hersey, Joseph Lieberman, Sargent Shriver, Paul Steiger, and Strobe Talbott. The YDN Historical Archive provides access to digitized copies of the paper, allowing the public to read and download past issues.

Each YDN article includes “Comprehensive Questions and Answers” that provide a deeper understanding of the story, and “Resources” for further reading and study. YDN articles also contain links to other media, such as videos, maps and web sites. The YDN is an excellent source of information on topics that are often not covered by other major newspapers.

In the early 1990s, the Daily News began to refocus its coverage on social and political issues. It gained a reputation for being a champion of the rights of women, minorities, and immigrants and won Pulitzer prizes for E.R. Shipp’s articles on welfare and race, and Mike McAlary’s reporting on police brutality against Haitian immigrant Abner Louima. The paper also developed a strong reputation as a staunch advocate for the First Amendment and fought for the rights of New York City residents, particularly those viewed as “outsiders.”

By the 1980s, however, the Daily News had become severely strained by union demands over rules and job numbers, leaving it in dire financial straits. The News was losing $1 million a month, and the paper considered closing down altogether. Instead, it was bought by Mort Zuckerman for $36 million, a fraction of what Conrad Black offered to buy it for.

The News under Zuckerman embarked on a series of big changes to revive its earning potential. He introduced a more serious tone to the newspaper, and invested $60 million in color presses in order to compete with the brash aesthetic of its rivals. He also negotiated with the papers’ unions to reduce labor costs. As a result, the Daily News was able to reclaim some of its former prestige and readership. It is currently one of the top-read newspapers in New York City.