type = Daily
foundation = 1905, replaced "
Daily Irish Independent".
Independent News and Media
political = originally Catholic Nationalist,
Irish Parliamentary Party,
Fine Gael, now centre right and
Fianna Fáil, populist on social issuesFact|date=June 2008
Talbot Street, Dublin
website = [http://www.independent.ie www.independent.ie]
The "Irish Independent" is Ireland's largest selling daily newspaper. Unusually, it is published in both compact and broadsheet formats.
It was formed in 1905 as the direct successor of the Daily Irish Independent, an 1890s pro-Parnellite newspaper. The Irish Independent was launched by
William Martin Murphy, a controversial Irish nationalist businessman, staunch anti-Parnellite and fellow townsman of Parnell's most venomous opponent, Bantry's Timothy Michael Healy. [ Andy Bielenberg, Entrepreneurship, Power, and Public Opinion in Ireland; The career of William Martin Murphy]
During the 1913 Lockout of workers, in which Murphy was the main figure among the employers, the "Irish Independent" vigorously sided with its owner's interests, publishing news reports and opinion pieces hostile to the strikers, expressing confidence in the unions' defeat and launching personal attacks on the leader of the strikers,
James Larkin. The "Irish Independent" described the 1916 Easter Rising as "insane and criminal" and famously called for the shooting of its leaders. [http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/easterrising/newspapers/index.shtml Easter Rising newspaper archive] — from the BBCHistory website] In December 1919, during the Irish War of Independence, a group of twenty IRA men destroyed the printing works of the paper, angered at its criticism of the Irish Republican Armyand largely pro-British and Unionist stance. In 1924, the traditional nationalist newspaper, the " Freeman's Journal", merged with the "Irish Independent".
For most of its history, the "Irish Independent" (also called simply the "Independent" or, more colloquially, the "Indo") was seen as a nationalist, Catholic newspaper, which gave its political allegiance to
Cumann na nGaedhaeland later its successor party, Fine Gael.
In the 1970s, it was taken over by former Heinz chairman
Tony O'Reilly. Under his leadership, it became a more populist, libertarian newspaper—populist on social issues, but economically conservative. By the mid-nineties its allegiance to Fine Gael had ended. In the 1997 general election, it endorsed Fianna Fáilunder a front page editorial, entitled 'It's Payback Time'. While it suggested its headline referred to the fact that the election offered a chance to 'pay back' politicians for their failings, its opponents suggested that the 'payback' actually referred to its chance to get revenge for the refusal of the Rainbow Coalition to award the company a mobile phone licence. [http://archives.tcm.ie/irishexaminer/2002/12/06/story187197121.asp Irish Examiner archives] — O’Reilly ‘took revenge in editorial’] Tony O'Reilly disputes this claim.
In late 2004, Independent Newspapers moved from their traditional home in Middle Abbey Street to a new office, "Independent House" in Talbot Street, with the printing facilities already relocated to the
Citywestbusiness park near Tallaght.
On September 27, 2005, a fortnight after the paper published its
centenaryedition, it was announced that editor Vinnie Doyle would step down after 24 years in the position. He was replaced by Gerry O'Regan, who had until then been editor of the Irish Independent's sister paper, the Evening Herald.
Its sister paper is the "
Sunday Independent". Other newspapers in the Independent News & Mediagroup include the " Evening Herald", the "Daily Star" (Irish edition), the " Sunday World" (all tabloids), many local Irish newspapers and " The Independent", a London-based newspaper, as well as newspapers in Australia and South Africa. The Group has a major share in the " Sunday Tribune", a Sunday broadsheet. The Independent News & Media Group has been accused of holding an 'unhealthy dominance' of the Irish newspaper market, [http://historical-debates.oireachtas.ie/D/0432/D.0432.199306100090.html Oireachtas Debate] ] all the more so since the demise of the Irish Press, Evening Press and Sunday Press newspapers published by the Irish Press Group in 1995. With the closure of the "Evening Press", the Independent's "Evening Herald" is now the only Irish national evening newspaper. Excluding the Sun and the Mirror, most of the content of which are produced in England, the Independent group owns just over 67% of Irish daily newspapers. Excluding the Sunday Times, it controls almost 87% of Irish newspapers sold on Sunday.
* [http://www.irishnewsarchive.com/ Irish News Archive Website] The full archives of the Irish Independent (1904-Current), The Sunday Independent (1905-Current), Freeman's Journal (1763-1924) and many more national, regional and out-of-print newspaper titles are available at the INA website including titles from Irish America.
* [http://www.independent.ie/ "Irish Independent" Website]
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