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    National Digital Edition of www.washingtonpost.com provides national and world news on the web for computers, tablets and smart phones. 

    May 17, 2024 7:37pm
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    The Washington Post was founded in Washington, DC, on December 6, 1877. A major daily newspaper specializing in national politics, The Washington Post (often referred to as TWP or WaPo) developed a reputation as one of the leading American political journalism institutions. TWP covers national and global news, politics and national security, business and technology, arts and entertainment, sports, and local and regional news. Sections include a range of topical areas -- education, climate and environment, science, health, immigration, and more.TWP's investigative journalists (set up as a permanent reporting unit in 1982 under Bob Woodward) cover a range of issues of national and international importance, and opinion columnists focus on politics, economics, culture, international news and other topics.

    In 1996, The Washington Post Company launched its online website washingtonpost.com, featuring content from the print edition (including original authored content and syndicated articles) as well as enriched interactive content accompanying articles and breaking news updated throughout the day.1 TWP's separate online and print operations were merged in 2009. Following the purchase of the The Washington Post by Jeff Bezos in 2013, WP Company LLC expanded news and investigative coverage as well as content diversification, including audio and video content, podcasts, live streaming and events, and branded content (WP Brand Studio).

    For internal publisher news and press releases, see: washingtonpost.com/pr/

    Retrospective Content and Archiving

    The online archive of content available through washingtonpost.com extends back to at least 2005 (publisher representatives describe accessible content as "a rolling 15 years"). However, it appears selected earlier content is accessible to users, particularly investigative journalism content related to Nixon and Watergate dating back to 1968. Search features do not enable limiting to specific date ranges (see below), so the extent of this content is unknown.

    Other Sources

    While the entire scope of TWP content including its rich multimedia resources is only available in the online edition, several commercially available databases do include article and page-image content from the print edition of The Washington Post and washingtonpost.com.

    • Factiva - Full-text (article only) access from January 1, 1984-present; online content from 1/1/2007.
    • Nexis Uni (formerly LexisNexis Academic) - Full-text (article only) access from January 1, 1977-present; online content from 2000.
    • ProQuest Newsstream - Full-text (article only) access from January 1, 1987-present; online content from 5/21/2016.
    • ProQuest Historical Newspapers - searchable/browseable content from printed publication (including news articles, photos, advertisements, classified ads, obituaries, etc) spanning 1877-2002.
    • ProQuest Recent Newspapers (formerly ProQuest Digital Microfilm) - searchable full-page images covering 2008-recent (3 month embargo on current content).

    TWP representatives report content is also available via EBSCO and Cengage.


    Since 2013, WP Company has invested in engineering and digital technology, including implementing a research, experimentation, and development (RED) team. The publisher utilizes its own proprietary platform, Arc Publishing (https://www.arcpublishing.com/) as its publishing system and online digital platform.

    Site content is organized by topical areas (Politics, Opinions, Investigations, World, Local, Sports, Arts & Entertainment) and major sections. Each article is assigned one or more tags to aid in organization of content, and is further tagged according to type of article (news, perspective, opinion, review, etc.).

    The site offers a simple search box at the top of every page. Advanced search features are not available up front, but search results can be filtered by publication date range (past day, week, 60 days, 12 months, or since 2005) or type of result -- article, photo, discussion, graphic, blog story, etc. Results may be sorted by relevance or date. Users cannot further refine results (such as by date range, author, subject tags, or other metadata created during the production process).

    Content may be shared via links on various social media platforms or as an email link. Users may add articles to "My Reading List" with an authorized account ('Add This' (+) may not be available on every story). Content may be printed or saved to PDF as individual articles. No additional advanced features such as scholarly citing or permanent URLs are available.

    Mobile delivery may vary depending on type of device and application used. For information on apps, see: https://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/contents/mobile/

    Update on Usage Reports to Subscribers

    TWP provides usage reports on a quarterly basis, and they are also available upon request.  Usage is tracked, based upon users who access the site while connected to the university’s network (on-site, via their IP ranges or off-site, from behind their proxy or while users are connected to the college’s VPN.)

    According to TWP, the following data points are tracked:

    Site Page Views: 

    • Individual visitor who arrives at the web site and proceeds to browse
    • Does not distinguish one user from another
    • Site visits could be one person visiting multiple times or multiple people visiting one time
    • Requires 2-page click-through

    Site Visit:

    • The sum of site page views over a 30-min period
    • The sequence of site page views occurring without a break for at least 30 minutes is calculated as a site view
    • A site visit always contains one or more-page views; requires at least 30 minutes of uninterrupted activity

    Content Page View: 

    • The pages visited once the user arrives at the site 
    • Each individual page viewed is tracked as one content page view
    • On average, a single visitor will look at about 2.5 pages
    • Requires a 5-page click-through  

    TWP implemented a digital paywall in 2013, limiting the number of free articles non-subscribers could view each month (initially set at 20 articles, as of May 2019 non-subscriber access is limited to 3 monthly articles before a subscription is required). TWP reportedly surpassed 1 million digital subscribers in June 2017. Formerly, TWP offered complementary access to subscribers with .edu, .gov or .mil email address. This policy was suspended for academics in November 2017, instead offering a discounted subscription rate for students, faculty and staff.

    For individuals TWP offers two types of digital subscriptions for individuals: "Basic," offering unlimited content access on TWP websites using any web browser or mobile apps; and "Premium," which includes access to certain premium content (in particular downloadable e-books from Post journalists) and the ability to share the subscription with one friend or family member.

    TWP has recently begun piloting campus-wide access to The Washington Post online via library subscription. Access options include 1) IP-based "campus-wide" access for all students and faculty, and 2) academic "all-digital-access" group subscriptions. CRL is negotiating with TWP for a consortium agreement for academic site licensing.

    According to TWP's subscription page, "Online archives access is not included in any digital-only subscription package and must be purchased separately."2 

    Access to content via subscription is subject to consent by the user to TWP's Terms of Service (located at https://www.washingtonpost.com/terms-of-service/2011/11/18/gIQAldiYiN_story.html) and Privacy Policy (located at https://www.washingtonpost.com/privacy-policy/2011/11/18/gIQASIiaiN_story.html), and if applicable, any additional policies and consents required of EEA residents to comply with the GDPR.

    Governing Law

    The TWP Terms of Service states: "This Agreement shall be governed by the laws of the United States and the District of Columbia. By using the Services, you waive any claims that may arise under the laws of other states, countries, territories or jurisdictions."


    James Simon, Center for Research Libraries


    1 "The WashingtonPost User Guide" (captured December 20, 1996), https://web.archive.org/web/19961220172601/http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/guide/front.htm (accessed 5/29/2019). According to the publisher, "[t]he entire text of The Washington Post arrives at WashingtonPost.com, but it may be organized in a different way than it was in the newspaper. ... The following material from The Post does not appear online: display advertising from the newspaper, photos, captions, graphics, some tabular data, and syndicated columnists who will not permit WashingtonPost.com to use their work."

    2 "Compare subscription packages" https://helpcenter.washingtonpost.com/hc/en-us/articles/115000443968-Compare-subscription-packages (accessed 5/29/2019).

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