Rzeczpospolita is a Polish national daily newspaper, with a circulation around of 160,000. Issued every day except Sunday. Rzeczpospolita was printed in broadsheet
Broadsheet is the largest of the various newspaper formats and is characterized by long vertical pages . The term derives from types of popular prints usually just of a single sheet, sold on the streets and containing various types of material, from ballads to political satire. The first broadsheet...
format, then switched to compact
A compact newspaper is a broadsheet-quality newspaper printed in a tabloid format, especially one in the United Kingdom. The term is used also for this size came into use in its current use when The Independent began producing a smaller format edition for London's commuters, designed to be easier...
at October 16, 2007. Its title is a traditional name of the Polish State, usually referred to as Rzeczpospolita Polska.
HistoryA newspaper with this title was issued for the first time in 1920. Initially, it was an organ of conservative Christian-National Party. With time it became an independent newspaper, owned by Ignacy Jan Paderewski
Ignacy Jan Paderewski
Ignacy Jan Paderewski GBE was a Polish pianist, composer, diplomat, politician, and the second Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland.-Biography:...
and Wojciech Korfanty
Wojciech Korfanty , born Adalbert Korfanty, was a Polish nationalist activist, journalist and politician, serving as member of the German parliaments Reichstag and Prussian Landtag, and later on, in the Polish Sejm...
, two notable politicians from that epoch. The editor in chief, Stanisław Stroński maintained a high quality of published texts, mainly thanks to a wide group of associates. Among them were Adolf Nowaczyński, Kornel Makuszyński
Kornel Makuszyński was a Polish writer of children's and youth literature.-Life:Makuszyński attended the Jan Długosz gymnasium in Lviv . While in school he wrote occasional poetry , and had his first poem published in 1902 in the newspaper Słowo Polskie , for which he soon became a theatrical critic...
and Władysław Witwicki. Despite the gained popularity, it had to be sold to Dom Prasy Katolickiej (House of Catholic Press) in 1930, and two years afterwards was merged with a right-wing daily Polak-Katolik, published by the Catholic Church.
In 1944, a Soviet-led administration was established behind the lines of the Soviet Army and started the propaganda activities directed against a former Nazi German occupation forces in order to gain the favour of the Polish society.
They started, under the name Rzeczpospolita, a newspaper dedicated for propaganda purposes in an attempt to establish more legitimacy for the newly formed, Soviet dependent government. And so. despite the fact that the Polish population's attitude was vehemently anti-communist, the new government newspaper began strenuous efforts for amending that adverse disposition. Headed by Jerzy Borejsza
Jerzy Borejsza , was a Polish communist activist and writer, chief of the communist press and publishing syndicate in the Stalinist period of the People's Republic of Poland.-Biography:Borejsza was born as Beniamin Goldberg to a Polish Jewish family...
, it was in fact an organ of the Polish Committee of National Liberation
Polish Committee of National Liberation
The Polish Committee of National Liberation , also known as the Lublin Committee, was a provisional government of Poland, officially proclaimed 21 July 1944 in Chełm under the direction of State National Council in opposition to the Polish government in exile...
. In 1949, after the founding of the Polish United Workers' Party
Polish United Workers' Party
The Polish United Workers' Party was the Communist party which governed the People's Republic of Poland from 1948 to 1989. Ideologically it was based on the theories of Marxism-Leninism.- The Party's Program and Goals :...
(called Party), which published its own central organ named Trybuna Ludu (People's Tribune), these two newspapers had been issued simultaneously by nearly two years. In 1950, Rzeczpospolita was discontinued, because co-existence of a party and the government newspaper was considered as unnecessary within a consolidated one-party state.
In 1980, the situation has changed radically. The state was in crisis, and the Party's image was destroyed, beyond repair. This inspired the idea to relaunch a separate government newspaper. The state, as an entity, became officially independent from the Party (even though this independence was, of course, largely fictitious within a communist state). Thus, from 1982 onwards, Rzeczpospolita and Trybuna Ludu resumed their parallel existence as official bulletins of the government and the Party apparatus respectively.
This dualism corresponded to the situation in the Soviet Union, where the government newspaper Izvestia
Izvestia is a long-running high-circulation daily newspaper in Russia. The word "izvestiya" in Russian means "delivered messages", derived from the verb izveshchat . In the context of newspapers it is usually translated as "news" or "reports".-Origin:The newspaper began as the News of the...
functioned alongside the Party's Pravda
Pravda was a leading newspaper of the Soviet Union and an official organ of the Central Committee of the Communist Party between 1912 and 1991....
, and where Izvestia has steered a course strikingly similar to Rzeczpospolita's in the 1990s.
After the 1989 revolution, the new Polish government released Rzeczpospolita into independence in 1991, forming a Franco-Polish
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...
A joint venture is a business agreement in which parties agree to develop, for a finite time, a new entity and new assets by contributing equity. They exercise control over the enterprise and consequently share revenues, expenses and assets...
named Presspublica S.A. to publish the paper. In 1996, the Norwegian
Norway , officially the Kingdom of Norway, is a Nordic unitary constitutional monarchy whose territory comprises the western portion of the Scandinavian Peninsula, Jan Mayen, and the Arctic archipelago of Svalbard and Bouvet Island. Norway has a total area of and a population of about 4.9 million...
Orkla Media corporation acquired a 51% share in Presspublica, and is now in joint control of a quarter of the entire Polish press landscape.
From 1989 until his death in 1996, the well-known journalist Dariusz Fikus was the first editor-in-chief of the independent Rzeczpospolita, followed by Piotr Aleksandrowicz (1996–2000), Maciej Łukasiewicz (2000–2004), Grzegorz Gauden (2004–2006), and Paweł Lisicki (since September 2006).
Main featuresRzeczpospolita's distinctive, editorial feature is division into three thematic sections with different colors for each of them: the news section is white, the business section is green and the legal section is yellow. Apart from these daily sections, there are several supplements appearing once or twice per week, such as cars and real estate, careers, TV, travel. On Saturdays, the paper is supplemented with a section entitled PlusMinus for essays on politics, history, and culture, often invited from well-known authors, which reflect a broad spectrum of opinions.
In addition to comprehensive daily legal and financial reports, Rzeczpospolita frequently publishes rankings on companies, institutions and government authorities, and claims to be most influential newspaper among Polish economic elites and political decision-makers.
Political profileRzeczpospolita's political profile is moderately conservative and arguably comparable to that of The Times
The Times is a British daily national newspaper, first published in London in 1785 under the title The Daily Universal Register . The Times and its sister paper The Sunday Times are published by Times Newspapers Limited, a subsidiary since 1981 of News International...
in Britain. It should be noted, however, that contemporary Rzeczpospolita reveals a moderately national taste – such as when trying to defend the Polish raison d'etat during the historical debates about Polish-German and Polish-Russian relations. Well as, is rather adversary of the social-liberal Gazeta Wyborcza
Gazeta Wyborcza is a leading Polish newspaper. It covers the gamut of political, international and general news. Like all the Polish newspapers, it is printed on compact-sized paper, and is published by the multimedia corporation Agora SA...
, and frankly speaking, do not favor any particular party in the political landscape of Poland.
Major eventsIn early 2005, Rzeczpospolita found itself at the very centre of a heated public debate, after one of its employees, the former dissident and journalist Bronisław Wildstein, abstracted a list with the names of 240,000 informers and victims of the communist secret police from the Institute of National Remembrance
Institute of National Remembrance
Institute of National Remembrance — Commission for the Prosecution of Crimes against the Polish Nation is a Polish government-affiliated research institute with lustration prerogatives and prosecution powers founded by specific legislation. It specialises in the legal and historical sciences and...
and distributed it among colleagues. In the wake of the incident, Wildstein was dismissed from Rzeczpospolita (cf. the article Wildstein's List in the Polish Wikipedia).
In 2006 the US-based Society for News Design
Society for News Design
The Society for News Design is an international organization for professionals working in the news sector of the media industry, specifically those involved with graphic design, illustration, web design and infographics....
voted Rzeczpospolita and British daily The Guardian
The Guardian, formerly known as The Manchester Guardian , is a British national daily newspaper in the Berliner format...
as the best-designed newspapers in the world, choosing them from 389 entries from 44 countries.