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February 24th, 2012

Coming soon to a British news stand near you: The Sun on Sunday

Coming soon to a British news stand near you: The Sun on Sunday

Unless you’ve been visiting another planet for several months (one of those far-flung ones that doesn’t have internet, TV, Twitter, Facebook or newspapers) you surely can’t have failed to have read about the demise of News International’s The News of the World.

But if for any reason you did miss out, and now find yourself pining for both the drama of the British newspaper industry and your weekend dose of celebrity-fuelled tabloid updates (without any allegedly-sourced-by-phone-hacking stories, naturally), then don’t worry, you can run out and buy the first issue of The Sun on Sunday, launching this weekend (26 February).

As soon as the launch was announced on Sunday night (and plastered over the front page of Monday’s The Sun), there was profuse speculation as to what the new publication would look like. Will it be a standalone paper, or just another day’s edition of The Sun, making it a seven-day newspaper?  And more importantly, will it still have a Page Three model?

James Alan Anslow, a lecturer at London’s City University who was a long-time journalist for both The Sun and The News of the World, explained in an interview with the Huffington Post that: “They’re not launching a newspaper, they’re launching an edition of a newspaper”. This would imply that there’s no new commitment and, by extension, guarantee of Murdoch’s backing of UK newspapers, which alongside The Sun includes, The Times and The Sunday Times. Anslow concluded that the launch was:  “a desperate last throw of the dice”.

And should we read anything into the timing? On Thursday singer (and fellow Welsh countrywoman) Charlotte Church finally settled her phone hacking allegation case with News International, after threatening to pursue it to the High Court. She was the final celebrity to settle, and would have been the only individual to go to
such lengths. So far all other celebrities, including Jude Law, Steve Coogan and Danii Minogue have settled out of court.

As the father of the newspaper/edition-to-be, Rupert Murdoch is reported to be staying in London for the week to check that the new arrival is happy and healthy. We’ll be sure to keep an eye on the new ‘baby’ and report back to you.

 

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Posted in London, Media, Prompt locations, UK press | 1 Comment »