Typo: A Monthly Newspaper and Literary Review, Volume 3
Correspondence. A Cyclopædia at Fault
Correspondence. A Cyclopædia at Fault.
The other day I had occasion to consult the latest edition of the Encyclopædia Britannica. I observed that the article on « Newspapers » was signed by Edward Edwards and Whitelaw Reid, the latter gentleman being a well-known leader in American journalism, and successor to that revered man among Americans (especially comps) Horace Greeley, in the editorial chair of the New York Tribune. Mr Reid has just been appointed the U. S. representative at the English Court. Of course I attached special value to an article which was signed by such names. Imagine my surprise, then, towards the close of the splendid essay to read what I have copied and given below, word for word. I have never yet seen the matter contradicted, but it may have been for all I know to the contrary. The article is to be found in vol. xvii, and was published in the year 1881, and contains statistics dated 1880; but it is altogether incorrect for any date. Here is the subject of criticism:—
Newspapers of Australasia.
New South Wales—Sydney (population 134,137) has 6 daily newspapers, of which the circulation of the chief ones, as it is stated hy their respective publishers, stands thus: Evening News, of which 3 or 4 successive editions are regularly published, 35,000; The Australian Town and Country Journal, 30,000; The Bulletin, 20,000.
The writer has nothing to say about the circulation—the circulation of a newspaper is like that of the body: it fluctuates. In the paragraph just quoted you will observe that while it is stated Sydney has 6 dailies, only one of the 3 named is a daily, the Town and Country Journal being a well-known and ably-conducted weekly paper, and the Bulletin a weekly « society » paper. Not a word about that fine old newspaper, the leading daily in the colony, the Morning Herald. Does any reader recollect Sydnay ever publishing 6 daily newspapers?
South Australia—Adelaide (population 32,250) has 4 daily papers.
Wrong again, is it not, Mr Editor? [No. Adelaide, we believe, has two morning and two evening dailies.]
Victoria—Melbourne, with a population nearly 9 times as large (282,907) has the like number. The publisher of the chief one, The Age, reports its circulation as 44,000.
What about the Argus?
New Zealand—Wellington (population about 19,000) has also 4 dailies, of which the New Zealand Times (7,000) is the chief.
This item brings us nearer home, and we find a big mistake. The only city in this colony which has possessed 4 daily papers is Christ-church. Wellington has never had more than 3, viz., the Post, Press, and Times. As to the Times being the chief among these, why it is nowhere in the race. The Post is the paper.
Tasmania—Hobart Town, with a population of about 20,000, has 3 dailies. One of these, the Evening Star, circulates 3,000 copies.
It seems to me that if the word « daily » had been left out of the article, it would have tended towards a more accurate list than as it reads a s printed.
Tom L. Mills.