The International Herald Tribune (IHT) was a daily English-language newspaper published in Paris, France for international English-speaking readers. It had the aim of becoming "the world's first global newspaper" and could fairly be said to have met that goal. It published under the name International Herald Tribune from 1967 to 2013.
|Owner(s)||Whitney Communications, The Washington Post and The New York Times Company |
|Founder(s)||James Gordon Bennett Jr.|
|Ceased publication||October 14, 2013|
|Sister newspapers||The New York Times|
In 1887, James Gordon Bennett Jr. created a Paris edition of his newspaper the New York Herald. He called it the Paris Herald. When Bennett Jr. died, the paper came under the control of Frank Munsey, who bought it along with its parent. In 1924, Munsey sold the paper to the family of Ogden Reid, owners of the New York Tribune, creating the New York Herald Tribune. By 1967, the paper was owned jointly by Whitney Communications, The Washington Post and The New York Times, and became known as the International Herald Tribune, or IHT. The IHT ceased publication in 2013.
The first issue of the International Herald Tribune was published on May 22, 1967.
Sold in over 160 countries, the International Herald Tribune was an innovative newspaper. It continued to produce a large amount of unique content until its closure.
In 1974, the paper pioneered the innovation of doing electronic transmission of facsimile pages across borders, when it opened a remote printing facility in London. This was followed by a printing site in Zurich in 1977. The International Herald Tribune began transmitting electronic images of newspaper pages from Paris to Hong Kong via satellite in 1980, making the paper simultaneously available on opposite sides of the planet. This was the first such intercontinental transmission of an English-language daily newspaper and followed the pioneering efforts of the Chinese-language newspaper Sing Tao Daily (星島日報).
Additional printing locations followed, including Rome and Tokyo 1987; and Frankfurt 1989. By 1985, the International Herald Tribune had a circulation of 160,000, and was profitable with annual revenues of around $40 million. At the time of the paper's centennial in 1987, the IHT was opening a new print site on average each year.
By the early 1990s, the paper was printed concurrently around the globe, with seven sites in Europe, three in Asia, and one in America, allowing day-of-publication availability in all major cities worldwide. Notably, every region received the same editorial content, and even most of the advertising ran across all areas; by comparison, the international edition of the Wall Street Journal was heavily regionalized. (Several editions were published of each day's paper, however, and sometimes particular regions saw revisions that other regions might not.) Nearly 200,000 copies were sold per day, including 50,000 in Asia and 45,000 copies to airlines flying international routes. Marking a departure from its origins as a paper mostly read by American expatriates and travelers in Europe, by this point the majority of its readers were non-American.
The International Herald Tribune's main editorial team was based in Paris, in the area of the Champs Elysées, and the paper reported from many news sources, including its own corps of correspondents and columnists.
The Times bought out the Post in 2003 and thereby became the sole owner of the International Herald Tribune. The Times subsequently folded the International Herald Tribune website into its own website during 2009.
In 2005 the paper opened its Asia newsroom in Hong Kong. In April 2001, the Japanese newspaper Asahi Shimbun (朝日新聞) tied up with the International Herald Tribune and published an English-language newspaper, the International Herald Tribune/Asahi Shimbun. After the Washington Post sold its stake in the International Herald Tribune, it continued being published under the name International Herald Tribune/Asahi Shimbun, but it was discontinued in February 2011.
By 2008, the circulation of the paper was over 240,000. By the early 2010s, the Internet edition of the paper was receiving some seven million visitors per month, and overall the IHT represented one of the biggest global media entities.
Throughout its history the Paris-based paper had a glittering stable of writers and journalists. Among the most well-known were the humorist Art Buchwald, the fashion editor Suzy Menkes, jazz critic Mike Zwerin and food writers Waverly Root and Patricia Wells. Former executive editors include John Vinocur, David Ignatius and Michael Getler.
In 2013, the New York Times removed the name IHT from the masthead. In 2016 the Paris offices closed amid massive layoffs. The National Book Review called it "end of a romantic era in international journalism".
This material is not available from any New York Times archive. (The New York Times website does host a very limited selection of "retrospective" stories from the 1887–2013 years, a collection that became available in 2017, the same year that the full archives became available on Gale.)