A tabloid-size Irish Independent, a sister title to The Independent in the UK, was launched on Tuesday and is being sold by more than 1,000 newsagents in the Dublin area.
The move is designed to boost sales in the face of increasing competition, but the Irish Independent stressed it was not a response to fears of an imminent launch of an Ireland version of the Daily Mail.
“It didn’t even cross our minds,” said marketing director Barry Brennan, who claimed experience in other markets with the compact-size broadsheet had shown it appealed to women and younger readers.
Unions at the Independent were given only 10 days’ notice of the launch.
After what was described as a heated debate at a meeting of the NUJ chapel, journalists decided to support a month’s trial of the tabloid-size newspaper.