Toronto Star

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The Toronto Star is a major metropolitan newspaper produced in the city of Toronto, Ontario, Canada. It has the largest circulation in the country, in excess of 400,000 daily, and is noted for its liberal stance. The paper emphasizes coverage of regional news stories from the Greater Toronto area.

While most of Canada's high-circulation newspapers and chains were acquired by large media conglomerates during the 1990s in a process called 'convergence' (the Globe and Mail by BCE, the National Post by CanWest Global), Torstar, the Toronto Star's parent company, has limited itself to several Southern Ontario local newspapers and various publishing ventures, including Harlequin romance novels. However, it has launched a license-exempt infomercial channel on Southern Ontario cable television systems (featuring rolling news at a certain point of the hour), and has attempted to win television licenses in Toronto and nearby cities.



Describing itself as a "paper for the people", the Star (originally known as the Evening Star and then the Toronto Daily Star) was created in 1892 by striking Afternoon News printers and writers. The paper did poorly in its first few years, but it prospered under editor Joseph "Holy Joe" Atkinson from 1899 until his death in 1948. Atkinson had a strong social conscience and, in keeping with the paper's tradition, championed many left-wing causes. By 1913 it had the largest circulation of any Toronto newspaper, and Atkinson was the majority shareholder. Ernest Hemingway was a Star writer in this period.

Atkinson principles

Shortly before his death Atkinson had ownership of the paper transferred to a charitable organization given the mandate of continuing the paper's liberal tradition (known today as the "Atkinson Principles"). Ontario's Conservative government of the time did not like the Star's editorial stance, however, and passed a law barring charitable organizations from owning a large part of a profit-making business, therefore requiring the Star to be sold. To circumvent this requirement, the trustees of the charitable organization bought the paper themselves and swore before court to continue the Atkinson Principles. Retention of the Atkinson Principles has led some detractors to say that 'the Star is the only newspaper in the world run by a dead man.'

Editorially, the Star is considered to be more liberal when compared to other (arguably right-wing) newspapers (Globe and Mail, National Post etc). It has been said that the Star urges readers to "think NDP and vote Liberal".

Notable employees of the Star (past and present)

See Also

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