51 Facts About The Guardian


The paper's readership is generally on the mainstream left of British political opinion, and the term "The Guardian reader" is used to imply a stereotype of liberal, left-wing or "politically correct" views.

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In June 2013, The Guardian broke news of the secret collection by the Obama administration of Verizon telephone records, and subsequently revealed the existence of the surveillance program PRISM after knowledge of it was leaked to the paper by the whistleblower and former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

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In 2016, The Guardian led an investigation into the Panama Papers, exposing then–Prime Minister David Cameron's links to offshore bank accounts.

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Manchester The Guardian was founded in Manchester in 1821 by cotton merchant John Edward Taylor with backing from the Little Circle, a group of non-conformist businessmen.

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On 13 May 1861, shortly after the start of the American Civil War, the Manchester The Guardian portrayed the Northern states as primarily imposing a burdensome trade monopoly on the Confederate States, arguing that if the South was freed to have direct trade with Europe, "the day would not be distant when slavery itself would cease".

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The Guardian was editor for 57 years from 1872, and became its owner when he bought the paper from the estate of Taylor's son in 1907.

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George Orwell wrote in Homage to Catalonia: "Of our larger papers, the Manchester The Guardian is the only one that leaves me with an increased respect for its honesty".

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Manchester The Guardian strongly opposed military intervention during the 1956 Suez Crisis: "The Anglo-French ultimatum to Egypt is an act of folly, without justification in any terms but brief expediency.

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In September 1961, The Guardian, which had previously only been published in Manchester, began to be printed in London.

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In 1995, both the Granada Television programme World in Action and The Guardian were sued for libel by the then cabinet minister Jonathan Aitken, for their allegation that Harrods owner Mohamed Al Fayed had paid for Aitken and his wife to stay at the Hotel Ritz in Paris, which would have amounted to accepting a bribe on Aitken's part.

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The court case proceeded, and in 1997 The Guardian produced evidence that Aitken's claim of his wife paying for the hotel stay was untrue.

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In May 1998, a series of The Guardian investigations exposed the wholesale fabrication of a much-garlanded ITV documentary The Connection, produced by Carlton Television.

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Later in June 1998, The Guardian revealed further fabrications in another Carlton documentary from the same director.

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The Guardian stated that "the only honourable course for Europe and America is to use military force".

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In October 2004, The Guardian published a humorous column by Charlie Brooker in its entertainment guide, the final sentence of which was viewed by some as a call for violence against U S President George W Bush; after a controversy, Brooker and the paper issued an apology, saying the "closing comments were intended as an ironic joke, not as a call to action.

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The Guardian asked Aslam to resign his membership of the group and, when he did not do so, terminated his employment.

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In recent decades, The Guardian has been accused of biased criticism of Israeli government policy and of bias against the Palestinians.

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The Guardian later clarified: "In 1980, the Israeli Knesset enacted a law designating the city of Jerusalem, including East Jerusalem, as the country's capital.

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On 11 August 2014 the print edition of The Guardian published a pro-Israeli advocacy advert during the 2014 Israel–Gaza conflict featuring Elie Wiesel, headed by the words "Jews rejected child sacrifice 3, 500 years ago.

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The Guardian hired former American Prospect editor, New York magazine columnist and New York Review of Books writer Michael Tomasky to head the project and hire a staff of American reporters and web editors.

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The site featured news from The Guardian that was relevant to an American audience: coverage of US news and the Middle East, for example.

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The Guardian retained his position as a columnist and blogger, taking the title editor-at-large.

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In subsequent years, however, The Guardian has hired various commentators on US affairs including Ana Marie Cox, Michael Wolff, Naomi Wolf, Glenn Greenwald and George W Bush's former speechwriter Josh Trevino.

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The Guardian US launched in September 2011, led by editor-in-chief Janine Gibson, which replaced the previous The Guardian America service.

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In October 2009, The Guardian reported that it was forbidden to report on a parliamentary matter – a question recorded in a Commons order paper, to be answered by a minister later that week.

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The part of the question referencing Carter-Ruck relates to the latter company's September 2009 gagging order on the publication of a 2006 internal report into the 2006 Cote d'Ivoire toxic waste dump scandal, which involved a class action case that the company only settled in September 2009 after The Guardian published some of the commodity trader's internal emails.

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The Guardian said it had destroyed the hard drives to avoid threatened legal action by the UK government that could have stopped it from reporting on US and British government surveillance contained in the documents.

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The Guardian was accused of being "racist and misogynistic" after it published a cartoon depicting Home Secretary, Priti Patel as a cow with a ring in its nose in an alleged reference to her Hindu faith, since cows are considered sacred in Hinduism.

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Journalist Glenn Greenwald, a former contributor to The Guardian, has accused The Guardian of falsifying the words of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange in a report about the interview he gave to Italian newspaper La Repubblica.

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The Guardian is the only British national daily to conduct an annual social, ethical and environmental audit in which it examines, under the scrutiny of an independent external auditor, its own behaviour as a company.

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The scheme aims to reduce the financial losses incurred by The Guardian without introducing a paywall, thus maintaining open access to the website.

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The paper's readership is generally on the mainstream left of British political opinion: a MORI poll taken between April and June 2000 showed that 80 per cent of The Guardian readers were Labour Party voters; according to another MORI poll taken in 2005, 48 per cent of The Guardian readers were Labour voters and 34 per cent Liberal Democrat voters.

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The Guardian's said that "you can be absolutely certain that come the next general election, The Guardian stance will not be dictated by the editor, still less any foreign proprietor but will be the result of vigorous debate within the paper".

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On 12 February 1988, The Guardian had a significant redesign; as well as improving the quality of its printers' ink, it changed its masthead to a juxtaposition of an italic Garamond "The", with a bold Helvetica "Guardian", that remained in use until the 2005 redesign.

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In 1992, The Guardian relaunched its features section as G2, a tabloid-format supplement.

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In June 1993, The Guardian bought The Observer from Lonrho, thus gaining a serious Sunday sister newspaper with similar political views.

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The Guardian Weekly was linked to a website for expatriates, Guardian Abroad, which was launched in 2007 but had been taken offline by 2012.

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The Guardian is printed in full colour, and was the first newspaper in the UK to use the Berliner format for its main section, while producing sections and supplements in a range of page sizes including tabloid, approximately A4, and pocket-size.

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In 2004, The Guardian announced plans to change to a Berliner or "midi" format, similar to that used by Die Tageszeitung in Germany, Le Monde in France and many other European papers.

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On Thursday, 1 September 2005, The Guardian announced that it would launch the new format on Monday 12 September 2005.

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The Guardian confirmed the launch date for the new format to be 15 January 2018.

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The Guardian launched an iOS mobile application for its content in 2009.

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The Guardian has taken what they call a very "open" stance in delivering news, and have launched an open platform for their content.

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The Guardian had a number of talkboards that were noted for their mix of political discussion and whimsy until they were closed on Friday, 25 February 2011 after they had settled a libel action brought after months of harassment of a conservative party activist.

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On 1 July 2020, The Guardian Soulmates was closed down with the explanation: "It hasn't been an easy decision to make, but the online dating world is a very different place to when we first launched online in July 2004.

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The Guardian now offers several regular podcasts made by its journalists.

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In 2003, The Guardian started the film production company GuardianFilms, headed by journalist Maggie O'Kane.

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The Guardian has been awarded the National Newspaper of the Year in 1998, 2005, 2010 and 2013 by the British Press Awards, and Front Page of the Year in 2002.

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The Guardian journalists have won a range of British Press Awards, including:.

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In 2016, The Guardian began awarding an annual Footballer of the Year award, given to a footballer regardless of gender "who has done something truly remarkable, whether by overcoming adversity, helping others or setting a sporting example by acting with exceptional honesty.

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An extensive Manchester The Guardian archive exists at the University of Manchester's John Rylands University Library, and there is a collaboration programme between the two archives.

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