History and Ownership
– The Guardian was founded in Manchester in 1821 by John Edward Taylor and the Little Circle.
– It merged with the British Volunteer in 1825 and became The Manchester Guardian and British Volunteer.
– The Scott Trust Limited was created in 1936 to secure the financial and editorial independence of The Guardian.
– The trust remains the owner of The Guardian, along with its sister papers The Observer and The Guardian Weekly.
– Profits are reinvested in journalism rather than distributed to owners or shareholders.
– The editor-in-chief Katharine Viner succeeded Alan Rusbridger in 2015.
– The newspaper changed its name to The Guardian in 1959, reflecting its focus on national and international affairs.
Format, Circulation, and Stances
– Since 2018, The Guardian’s main newsprint sections have been published in tabloid format.
– As of July 2021, its print edition had a daily circulation of 105,134.
– The newspaper has an online edition, TheGuardian.com, as well as international websites for Australia, New Zealand, and the US.
– The readership of The Guardian is generally on the mainstream left of British political opinion.
– The newspaper reaches over 23 million UK adults each month, including online readership.
– The Guardian earned respect during the Spanish Civil War for its support of the Republican government.
– The newspaper opposed Aneurin Bevan and encouraged readers to vote Conservative in the 1951 general election.
– The Guardian opposed the creation of the National Health Service.
– The newspaper strongly opposed military intervention during the 1956 Suez Crisis.
Notable Scoops and Awards
– The Guardian obtained notable scoops such as the News International phone-hacking scandal and the PRISM surveillance program.
– It led an investigation into the Panama Papers, exposing former Prime Minister David Cameron’s links to offshore bank accounts.
– The Guardian has been named newspaper of the year four times at the British Press Awards.
– It scored highest for digital-content news trust in a 2018 Ipsos MORI research poll.
– The paper’s print edition was found to be the most trusted in the UK from October 2017 to September 2018.
Abolition of Slavery and British Divisions over the Civil War
– The Guardian opposed slavery and supported free trade.
– It welcomed the Slavery Abolition Act 1833 and called for compensation to the planters.
– The newspaper argued against restricting trade with countries that had not abolished slavery.
– The Manchester Guardian portrayed the Northern states as imposing a trade monopoly on the Confederate States during the American Civil War.
– The newspaper supported the Confederacy’s right to self-determination but criticized Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation for not freeing all slaves.
– Some British towns, including Liverpool, supported the Confederacy.
– The Union blockade caused suffering in British towns.
– The assassination of Abraham Lincoln shocked the British community.
Controversies and Investigations
– The Guardian challenged the Act of Settlement 1701 and the Treason Felony Act 1848.
– It published a column by Charlie Brooker that sparked controversy and led to an apology.
– The newspaper investigated tax avoidance by major UK companies and published a database of tax paid by FTSE 100 companies.
– The Guardian played a pivotal role in exposing the News of the World phone hacking affair.
– The newspaper has been accused of biased criticism of Israeli government policy and bias against Palestinians.
– The Guardian received complaints about language used to describe Jews and Israel, leading to corrections and revisions.
– The Guardian’s involvement in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has sparked controversy and debate.
– The newspaper launched a letter-writing campaign in Clark County, Ohio during the 2004 US election.
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