Toronto Star

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The Toronto Star is Canada's highest-circulation newspaper,[4] though its print edition is distributed almost entirely within the province of Ontario. It is owned by Toronto Star Newspapers Ltd., a division of Star Media Group, a subsidiary of Torstar Corporation.



The Star (originally known as The Evening Star and then The Toronto Daily Star ) was created in 1892 by striking Afternoon News printers and writers. The paper did poorly in its first few years. It prospered under Joseph "Holy Joe" Atkinson, editor from 1899 until his death in 1948.

Atkinson had a strong social conscience. He championed many causes that would come to be associated with the modern welfare state: old age pensions, unemployment insurance, and health care. The Government of Canada Digital Collections website describes Atkinson as "a ‘radical’ in the best sense of that term…. The Star was unique among North American newspapers in its consistent, ongoing advocacy of the interests of ordinary people. The friendship of Atkinson, the publisher, with Mackenzie King, the prime minister, was a major influence on the development of Canadian social policy."

Atkinson was also a shrewd businessman who became the controlling shareholder of the Star and amassed a considerable personal fortune. The Toronto Daily Star was frequently criticized for practising the yellow journalism of its era. For decades, the paper included heavy doses of crime and sensationalism, along with crusading zeal for social change. From 1910 to 1973, the Star published a weekend supplement, the Star Weekly.

Its early opposition and criticism of the Nazi regime saw the paper become the first North American paper to be banned in Germany by its government.[citation needed]

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