German newspaper history

gratiszeitung_2001_mGerman public broadcaster WDR aired a documentary on the history of newspapers last week.

A slideshow is available on their website. Slide number 13 (picture from WDR) concerned the Cologne newspaper war.

In December 1999 Norwegian publisher Schibsted launched their free daily 20 Minuten in Cologne. It was met with great resistance from the local publisher Dumont Schauberg (Express, box in the back of the picture) and national boulevard paper Bild Zeitung from Axel Springer (also in the back of the picture).

Springer started with free daily Köln Extra two days later while Dumont Schauberg launched Kölner Morgen in February. Springer and Dumont Schauberg also took Schibsted to court and begun to lower the advertising rates to almost zero.

In july 2001 Schibsted gave up, both competitors closed a day later.

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