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USA Today

National daily newspaper USA Today challenged established newspaper industry practices when it launched on September 15, 1982. The four-section paper was printed in near-magazine-quality color, unlike most newspapers at that time that printed in black and white, or with occasional color that often was faded or blurry. USA Today catered to affluent, well-educated readers willing to read a second newspaper that offered consumer-friendly articles and images.

The newcomer was scorned by the media elite as McPaper, the news equivalent of fast food. However, over time, USA Today thrived, and many of its newspaper detractors borrowed the paper’s best innovations including the full-page color-coded weather map and bite-size graphics that explained complex demographic and economic trends in simple, clear terms. This entry provides an overview of ...

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