Helsingin Sanomat
Helsingin Sanomat is the largest subscription newspaper
A newspaper is a scheduled publication containing news of current events, informative articles, diverse features and advertising. It usually is printed on relatively inexpensive, low-grade paper such as newsprint. By 2007, there were 6580 daily newspapers in the world selling 395 million copies a...

 in Finland
Finland , officially the Republic of Finland, is a Nordic country situated in the Fennoscandian region of Northern Europe. It is bordered by Sweden in the west, Norway in the north and Russia in the east, while Estonia lies to its south across the Gulf of Finland.Around 5.4 million people reside...

 and the Nordic countries
Nordic countries
The Nordic countries make up a region in Northern Europe and the North Atlantic which consists of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden and their associated territories, the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland...

, owned by Sanoma. Except after certain holidays, it is published daily. In 2008, its daily circulation
Newspaper circulation
A newspaper's circulation is the number of copies it distributes on an average day. Circulation is one of the principal factors used to set advertising rates. Circulation is not always the same as copies sold, often called paid circulation, since some newspapers are distributed without cost to the...

 was 412,421 on weekdays (a change of −1.8% from 2007) and 468,505 on Sundays (−1.3%). Its name derives from that of the Finnish capital, Helsinki
Helsinki is the capital and largest city in Finland. It is in the region of Uusimaa, located in southern Finland, on the shore of the Gulf of Finland, an arm of the Baltic Sea. The population of the city of Helsinki is , making it by far the most populous municipality in Finland. Helsinki is...

, where it is published.

The Helsingin Sanomat website HS.fi is one of the most important sources of news in Finnish on the web. In June 2009 the site was the sixth most popular Finnish website.

In Finland, the paper's name is often abbreviated to HS. Colloquially it is called Hesari.


The paper was founded in 1889 as Päivälehti
Päivälehti was a newspaper in Finland, which was then a Grand Duchy under the Czar of Russia. The paper was founded in 1889 as the organ of the Young Finnish Party and published on six days a week....

, when Finland was a Grand Duchy
Grand Duchy of Finland
The Grand Duchy of Finland was the predecessor state of modern Finland. It existed 1809–1917 as part of the Russian Empire and was ruled by the Russian czar as Grand Prince.- History :...

 under the Tsar
Tsar is a title used to designate certain European Slavic monarchs or supreme rulers. As a system of government in the Tsardom of Russia and Russian Empire, it is known as Tsarist autocracy, or Tsarism...

 of Russia
Russia or , officially known as both Russia and the Russian Federation , is a country in northern Eurasia. It is a federal semi-presidential republic, comprising 83 federal subjects...


Political censorship by the Russian authorities, prompted by the paper's strong advocacy of greater Finnish freedoms and even outright independence, forced Päivälehti to often temporarily suspend publication, and finally to close permanently in 1904. Its proprietors re-opened the paper under its current name in 1905.

Originally founded as the organ of the Young Finnish Party
Young Finnish Party
The Young Finnish Party or Constitutional-Fennoman Party was a liberal and nationalist political party in the Grand Duchy of Finland...

, the paper has been politically independent and non-aligned since the 1930s.

Helsingin Sanomat has a long history as a family business
Family business
A family business is a business in which one or more members of one or more families have a significant ownership interest and significant commitments toward the business’ overall well-being....

, owned by the Erkko
Erkko is a Finnish family known for their ownersship of the newspaper Helsingin Sanomat- Family members :* J. H. Erkko , Finnish poet and playwright....


It is currently owned by the Sanoma media group.

The relationship between the owners of Helsingin Sanomat and Finland's government have sometimes been close. For instance, during the run-up to the Winter War
Winter War
The Winter War was a military conflict between the Soviet Union and Finland. It began with a Soviet offensive on 30 November 1939 – three months after the start of World War II and the Soviet invasion of Poland – and ended on 13 March 1940 with the Moscow Peace Treaty...

, Eljas Erkko
Eljas Erkko
Juho Eljas Erkko was a Finnish politician and journalist. He was a foreign minister and negotiated with the Soviet Union before the Winter War started...

 was at the same time the paper's publisher and Finland's foreign minister
Minister of Foreign Affairs (Finland)
The Minister for Foreign Affairs of Finland handles Finland's foreign affairs...



The paper is published daily in Finnish
Finnish language
Finnish is the language spoken by the majority of the population in Finland Primarily for use by restaurant menus and by ethnic Finns outside Finland. It is one of the two official languages of Finland and an official minority language in Sweden. In Sweden, both standard Finnish and Meänkieli, a...

 in broadsheet format with the exception of the days after public holidays when the paper does not appear. The only exception to this is the day after Finnish independence day (7 December) when the revenue from Christmas advertising ensures an edition after that public holiday. Subscriptions make up 97% of the newspaper's circulation and the lack of a need to attract casual readers on newsstands had led to the front page usually being totally devoted to advertisements. (However, a few events have been important enough to be reported on the front page, without any advertisements.)

The paper also has a monthly supplement named Kuukausiliite (Finnish for "Monthly Supplement"), and a weekly TV guide and entertainment-oriented supplement named Nyt ("Now"). There are also both Finnish and English-language Internet
The Internet is a global system of interconnected computer networks that use the standard Internet protocol suite to serve billions of users worldwide...


Circulation and influence

Helsingin Sanomat has a penetration of approximately 75% of the households of the Greater Helsinki
Greater Helsinki
Greater Helsinki and the smaller Helsinki Metropolitan Area or Capital Region refer to two regions of different size surrounding Helsinki, the capital of Finland...

 region, and also functions as the local paper of the region (together with Swedish-language Hufvudstadsbladet
Hufvudstadsbladet is the highest-circulation Swedish-language newspaper in Finland. Its headquarters are located in Helsinki, the capital of Finland. The name of the newspaper translates approximately into "The Capital City Newspaper", hufvudstad being 19th century Swedish for capital...

). Its total daily circulation is well over 400,000, or about 8% of Finland's total population, making it the biggest daily subscription newspaper in the Nordic countries
Nordic countries
The Nordic countries make up a region in Northern Europe and the North Atlantic which consists of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden and their associated territories, the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Åland...


The paper is a significant factor in Finnish society. Pertti Klemola, a Finnish journalist and scholar, once called it a state authority, an institution with its own independent social and political will.

Helsingin Sanomat strongly advocated Finland joining the European Union
European Union
The European Union is an economic and political union of 27 independent member states which are located primarily in Europe. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community and the European Economic Community , formed by six countries in 1958...

 in the run-up to the decision to do so in 1994. It has also openly expressed support for Finland's membership of NATO.

Helsingin Sanomat International Edition

The English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

 section of the HS website, the Helsingin Sanomat International Edition (often abbreviated to just HSIE) started in 1999 with the aim of informing readers of news from Finland during the Finnish presidency of the European Union. However it continued after the presidency due to the amount of readers it was getting and it is now seen as one of the major sources of news about Finland in English, making it popular with English-speaking immigrants to the country.

See also

External links

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