Roger House, associate professor of American Studies, explains the history of British and American tabloids to Reader’s Digest, which is timely as the recent Meghan and Harry stunning announcement is most likely due in part to the intense media scrutiny they face. House says tabloids date back to the late 19th century, and American publications were modeled after the British “redtops.”
British tabloids embraced a newsroom culture of gutter tactics, explains House. This paparazzi culture was inflamed with the arrival of Rupert Murdoch’s notorious journalism of check-book bribery, intrusive tactics, and hounding of subjects. The Murdoch control of news mediums across multiple platforms and continents created a toxic global matrix of news coverage.