Times, Guardian and BBC lead British media invasion of the US

As The Times this week started printing copies of a US edition in New York, The Guardian has told Press Gazette of plans to double its US-based reporting team and also begin printing in the US.

Meanwhile, the BBC has made its rolling news channel BBC World available to US viewers for the first time.

Unlike The Times — which has started printing a US edition on the presses of the New York PostThe Guardian will be printed on small-scale digital presses at half a dozen US cities.

Guardian editor Alan Rusbridger said the print run is likely to total a few thousand, and that this was just "an interesting sideline" to the internet operation.

The Guardian and The Observer currently have seven US-based correspondents and this figure is to be increased by six "in the first year". There will be a US editor and deputy editor and a presence on both coasts.

Rusbridger said: "We haven't done any marketing in America and we already have five million readers [of the website] — and there are huge opportunities for growing this. I think British papers do provide a different style of journalism for which there appears to be a great thirst."

He said The Guardian provides a range of comment not available in the US, and added that The Guardian's expansion will be helped by the New York Times's decision to make the comment section on its site paid-for.

The BBC this week launched News 24 in the US — one of the few places in the world where has not been previously available. It is available to cable TV viewers in New York.

A big illustrated poster on Broadway asks New Yorkers to decide which of two differing opinions they agree with most — for example, are immigrants criminals or good citizens? Are US soldiers liberators or occupiers?

BBC head of marketing Seema Kotecha said: "Research shows that American viewers are increasingly interested in international news, yet most US news networks are spending less airtime on international news stories.

We hope to fill this gap in the market and are delighted to have the opportunity to bring our 24-hour global coverage and analysis to North American shores for the first time."

Reuters has launched a similar campaign in the US. It too has taken billboard space on Times Square in Manhattan. Its ads also ask controversial questions, which it invites passersby to answer on their mobile phones.

One relates to bird flu, and portrays a chicken with the question: Global epidemic or global hysteria?

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