Weekly newspaper

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A weekly newspaper is a newspaper that appears regularly every seven days. Weekly newspapers stand between daily newspapers and other periodicals , which appear as publications with a certain regularity at either longer or unequal time intervals. The appearance of a weekly newspaper is very similar to that of a daily newspaper.


Title page of the first edition of the Aviso, Relation or newspaper from January 15, 1609

The first verifiable weekly newspapers in German-speaking countries were the Relation and the Aviso , which appeared at the beginning of the 17th century : The Relation probably appeared in Strasbourg from 1605 and the Aviso from January 1609 in Wolfenbüttel .

The creation of these newspapers was almost “in the air” at the time: Johannes Gutenberg had invented printing with movable type, there were systems of regular mail delivery across Europe and thus the possibility of being supplied by correspondents and commercial news systems.

All of this did not just exist in 1605, but also in the years before that. According to Thomas Schröder, the fact that the publication of weekly newspapers still marks a turning point from today's perspective is due to the fact that they combine four characteristic features:

  • Periodicity through regular appearance
  • Topicality in contrast to the irregularly published leaflets, pamphlets, measurement relations and other publications
  • Universality as a variety of content
  • Publicity with a greater reach, which - unlike the early system of business letters, for example - they strive for as weekly newspapers .

However, while today the “year of the newspaper's birth” is celebrated properly, the weekly newspaper type 1605 was created largely silently; contemporaries did not find it a sensation.

The Aviso and the Relation came on the market in politically troubled times: the Augsburg Religious Peace barely concealed the conflicts between Protestants and Catholics, and in retrospect the Thirty Years' War was just around the corner. So the need for information was great.

Apart from the language, the Aviso and the relation seem very modern today. First of all, it should be mentioned that both contained an impressive proportion of international reporting (Aviso 31% of the verbal proportion, the ratio 41% of the verbal proportion). The Netherlands and Italy played the greatest role in European reporting in both newspapers: The Netherlands because of the conflict between the Calvinist north and the southern Netherlands, which belongs to Spain (1609 armistice); Italy in particular because of the news from the Vatican.

Regionally, when it came to news from the interior of the Reich, both newspapers concentrated on two regions that belong to the Habsburg sphere of influence: Bohemia (which is now part of the Czech Republic) and Austria. This was due to a major domestic political event: the brotherly dispute between the Holy Roman Emperor, Rudolf II , and Matthias , who had wrested control of Austria from him in 1608 (three years later he also took Bohemia from him). Rudolf II and Matthias were both Habsburgs and thus members of the dominant noble family in Europe; the fratricidal dispute was thus a subject of general interest.

Topics from the fields of politics and the military took up most of the space in both newspapers (around two thirds), otherwise there was reports on trade, court, church and everyday life.

Unlike today, reports were mainly about kings and princes; This was followed by reports and reports on soldiers, and the life and events of the bourgeoisie were only treated in passing.

Features of modern weekly newspapers

Because they are published weekly, they offer the opportunity to deal with topics in greater detail - apart from the hustle and bustle of daily reporting - than is usual with daily newspapers, for example. The same subject areas are dealt with and a weekly newspaper has the same structure as a daily newspaper. Readers can find out more about topics and events here, details and backgrounds as well as the broader context are presented here. Issues and problems of the past are also repeatedly taken up and dealt with here. In addition, scientific and popular science topics are increasingly addressed.

Often different opinions on a political issue are published in one publication, a pro and a con article.

Weekly newspapers are more oriented towards a longer-term development of opinions and usually show a more comprehensive range of opinions than daily newspapers without losing their opinion profile. Typical text forms here are the commentary , the analysis, the report , the glosses and reviews in the cultural part.

Weekly newspapers have high reader-magazine loyalty.

Weekly newspapers in Germany today

There are supraregional and regional weekly newspapers as well as regional and local weekly newspapers (around 80 titles), but these often have very low circulation figures . According to the Federal Association of Newspaper Publishers , 28 weekly newspapers had a circulation of 2.08 million copies in 2006, and 20 weekly newspapers in 2016 had a circulation of 1.7 million.

After the discontinuation of Woche and the successor weekly weekly post (both 2002) and Rheinischer Merkur (2010), the following national weekly newspapers are still available in Germany:

Weekly newspaper (abbreviation) Place of the publisher Alignment
Our time - newspaper of the DKP eat socialist
Jungle World Berlin Left
Friday Berlin left-liberal
The time Hamburg liberal
Prussian General Newspaper Hamburg right-wing conservative
Young freedom Berlin new right
Parliament Frankfurt am Main state
Bavarian State Newspaper Munich state
State Gazette of Baden-Württemberg Stuttgart state
Jewish general Berlin Jewish, liberal
Sunday paper Munich Protestant
MK Germany Moscow , Frankfurt am Main Russian speaking
VDI news Dusseldorf Industry newspaper for engineers

The national Sunday newspapers are Bild am Sonntag , Die Welt am Sonntag and the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung .

In addition, there are regionally published weekly newspapers, some of which are used by daily newspapers as the seventh edition (e.g. the former Sonntag Aktuell in southern Germany), as well as a large number of free advertising papers with local reporting.

The Borbecker Nachrichten in Essen is not a free newspaper, but its publication will be discontinued on August 31, 2018.

Some dioceses also maintain weekly newspapers, which are mostly called the church newspaper , diocese newspaper or diocese newspaper . One of the oldest denominational newspapers in Germany is the weekly newspaper of the pilgrims of the Speyer diocese, founded in 1848 . The German church newspaper with the highest circulation is Kirche + Leben des Diocese of Münster . All diocesan papers have seen a sharp decrease in circulation over the last few decades, some titles have been discontinued or merged with other papers.

The daily post appears weekly in Würzburg, independent of the diocese, but with a church focus .

Weekly newspapers in other countries

In Switzerland appear The weekly (LAT) , Die Weltwoche , the Sunday newspaper , the NZZ am Sonntag , Switzerland on Sunday , the Sunday view and more. See list of Swiss newspapers .

Austrian weekly newspapers are primarily the left-liberal Falter , the liberal-Catholic Furche and the right-wing conservative Zur Zeit .

The northernmost newspaper in the world is also a weekly: Svalbardposten from Spitzbergen .

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Margot Lindemann: German press until 1815 . History of the German Press Part 1. [Treatises and materials for journalism, Volume 5], Colloquium, Berlin 1969, p. 86.
  2. ^ Thomas Schröder: The first newspapers, text design and news selection , Gunter Narr; Tübingen 1995, pp. 1, 28 and 29.
  3. ^ Federal Association of German Newspaper Publishers: Newspapers 2006. Berlin 2006.
  4. The German newspapers in figures and data 2016 , Bundesverband Deutscher Zeitungsverleger (Ed.), 2016, p. 5 ( pdf ).

See also


  • Koszyk, Kurt: German Press 1914-1945 . History of the German Press Part 3. [Treatises and materials for journalism Volume 7], Colloquium, Berlin 1972, ISBN 3-7678-0309-7 .
  • Schröder, Thomas: The first newspapers. Text design and message selection. Gunter Narr, Tübingen 1995, ISBN 3-8233-4144-8 .
  • Noelle-Neumann, Elisabeth; Schulz, Winfried; Wilke, Jürgen (Hrsg.): Fischer Lexikon. Journalism mass communication. Fischer Taschenbuch Verlag, Frankfurt 2000, ISBN 3-596-12260-0 .
  • Federal Association of German Newspaper Publishers: Newspapers 2006 . Berlin 2006, ISBN 978-3-939705-00-0 .