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Guardian: game of editions

Version 2 2024-06-17, 18:10
Version 1 2016-03-24, 15:09
journal contribution
posted on 2024-06-17, 18:10 authored by C Murrell
In 2013 The Guardian launched its third online iteration as ‘Guardian Australia’ – complementing ‘‘Guardian US’ and Guardian UK’. Via these three digital editions the Guardian has expanded its global readership, which is one of its strategies to strengthen its future viability in the digital and mobile news sphere. The Guardian’s journalists, while gathering news from around the world, now report in to the different news hubs. In the three main newsrooms, the journalists also create particular stories for their niche audiences in Australia, the USA and the UK. This paper examines the editorial content the Guardian has created on the back of digital disruption. Two months’ worth of ‘Editor’s Picks’ from across the three platforms are analysed to reveal how much the Guardian is promoting new, distinctive, locally created content versus how much it draws on material written by journalists from the other editions. This content is compared to data derived from interviewing those in charge of the three editions (Editor in chief Kath Viner, Guardian Australia Editor Emily Wilson and Guardian US Editor Lee Glendinning) plus interviews with other senior managers of the news organisation. In mid-2015 a fourth online edition of the Guardian began rolling out – Guardian International. This edition is not geo-specific and will instead promote and aggregate international news gathered from the other editions on its digital ‘front page’. In January 2016 the Guardian announced it planned to cut annual costs by £53.6m due to rising losses: a move that will almost certainly involve staff redundancies. Later in the same month, Guardian Australia’s editor, Emily Wilson, said in a public forum that the operations in Sydney and New York would be ‘completely insulated’ from these cuts. This paper explores the Guardian’s global digital strategy during this difficult era for media that straddle the legacy and digital worlds.



Media@LSE Working Paper Series




London, Eng.





Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Copyright notice

2016, London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)


London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)

Place of publication

London, Eng.