Toby Young

The Sun shone yesterday

The Sun shone yesterday
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According to early figures from wholesalers and retailers, the first edition of the Sun on Sunday has sold over three million copies, a big win for Rupert Murdoch and the team of journalists — including yours truly — who had to get the new paper out at breakneck speed. Last week, the News Corp chairman said on Twitter he’d be happy with anything substantially over two million. As it is, sales have comfortably surpassed those recorded by the News of the World when it closed last year.

 

This rather gives the lie to all those commentators in the broadsheets who gave the new paper the thumbs-down over the weekend.

 

In the Guardian (circ: 229,753), Roy Greenslade described it as ‘unusually bland’, while Matthew Engel in the FT (circ: 319,757) dismissed it as ‘timid, mumbling, joyless and dull’.

 

Engel predicted that the new paper would have all the firepower of a ‘popgun’ in the circulation war Murdoch had unleashed by pricing it at 50p. Turns out it was more of a Howitzer, with the sales of rival tabloids falling between 15 and 30 per cent. According to the Guardian, Trinity Mirror is the biggest loser:

‘Early estimates indicate that the People could be down as much as 30% week-on-week to a circulation of about 560,000; while the Sunday Mirror is looking to be down by about a quarter to approximately 1.3m.’

News of the World

News of the World

Guardian

lacked ‘guilty pleasures’

tweeted

Sun

NOTW

Independent

claims

News of the World

‘For nearly eight months, we've been breathless with expectation: imagine the vigour and cheek of The Sun allied to the campaigning zeal of the Screws. Imagine more kiss-and-tell footballer babes and Nazi S&M parlours, more fake sheiks and Pakistani spot-fixing, more swingers' clubs and imaginative uses for mobile phones. Would it be a rag we could treasure as a monument to British vulgarity, plumbing new depths of pun-riddled persiflage?’

Sun

Independent’s editorial

Sun on Sunday

‘Justifiable high-fives all round at Wapping and whistles from Mr Murdoch's fawning admirers? Hardly. The fallout from the appalling behaviour of some of his employees continues.’

Independent

Guardian

FT

Sun on Sunday

Written byToby Young

Toby Young is the co-author of What Every Parent Needs to Know and the co-founder of several free schools. In addition to being an associate editor of The Spectator, he is an associate editor of Quillette. Follow him on Twitter @toadmeister

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