Irish Daily Mail

Irish Daily Mail

A 50c issue from January 2007
Type Daily newspaper
Format Tabloid
Owner(s) Associated Newspapers
Founded February 2006
Political alignment Right-wing eurosceptic

The Irish Daily Mail is a newspaper published in Ireland and Northern Ireland by Associated Newspapers. The paper was launched in February 2006 with a launch strategy that included giving away free copies on the first day of circulation and low pricing subsequently.[1] The 2009 price is one euro. The aim of this strategy was to attract readers away from the Irish Independent.[2]

Associated Newspapers Ireland employs over 160 people in Ireland. Both the Irish Daily Mail and the Irish Mail on Sunday, along with their magazines, YOU and TV Week, are printed in Kells and Citywest, Dublin.

British media analyst Roy Greenslade argued that falling sales are because whereas the British version of the Daily Mail acutely understands its readership, "None of that understanding of the culture, politics and genuine interests of the Irish people is evident in the pages of the Irish Daily Mail".[3] By 2009 this policy had changed as it was offering Irish language wallcharts for schoolchildren, and most of its coverage was about Irish subjects, though it is frequently scathing about politicians.[4]

Irish columnists are contributing to the paper, with Ronan Mullen's column, for example, in the Irish Daily Mail since May 2006. Ronan Mullen was previously a columnist with the Irish Examiner. Mary Ellen Synon, a former Sunday Independent columnist who had controversial views on travellers, asylum seekers and the Paralympics is a regular contributor to the paper. Mark Dooley has also served as a columnist since 2006. His popular column "Moral Matters" appears on Wednesdays.

On 24 September 2006, Ireland on Sunday, which had been purchased by Associated Newspapers in 2001, was rebranded as the Irish Mail on Sunday, replacing the British edition of the Mail on Sunday in the Irish market.

In February 2007 Fine Gael leader Enda Kenny cited the Irish Daily Mail in the Dáil regarding a front page which depicted a CT scanner that lay idle in a laundry room.

In October 2012 the Irish Daily Mail was a winner of an NNI Journalism Award honour in category 'Best Design & Presentation'. The jury said "There was attitude, colour cohesion and brilliant headline writing throughout."[5]


The Irish Daily Mail audited circulation for July to December 2013 was 49,814.[6]

The Irish Daily Mail audited circulation for July to December 2014 was 45,139. A 9.4% decline.[6]


The paper has faced criticism for attempting to transfer its traditional campaigns on topics such as the EU and immigration and asylum from the British market to Ireland. In Ireland, the EU and immigration were considered building blocks of Ireland's economic boom and as such did not raise the same furious reactions from readers as they do in Britain.[7] It regularly covered the Lisbon Treaty debate, opposing acceptance of the treaty leading up to the referendum in June 2008.

The parent company Daily Mail in London also faced allegations back in 1997 of anti-Irish prejudice, and was reported to the Press Complaints Commission on these grounds by the non-governmental organisation the Pat Finucane Centre.[8]

In April 2009, it was pointed out by popular British science blog The Lay Scientist that while the Irish Daily Mail were campaigning for the reintroduction of the HPV vaccine in Ireland, the Daily Mail in London were printing stories attacking the vaccine.[9] The contradiction was condemned by many, including comedy writer Graham Linehan.[10]

On 1 February 2011 it was announced that the Sunday Tribune had gone into receivership, with fresh investment being sought by McStay Luby.[11] The following day it was announced that there would be no further edition of the newspaper for four weeks.[12] The last issue appeared on 30 January 2011. On 6 February 2011, the edition of the Irish Mail on Sunday had a cover similar in style to the Tribune[13][14][15][16][17] The Irish Mail on Sunday was subsequently sued.[18] The fake Mail on Sunday featured a "wraparound" cover with a heading saying "a special edition designed for readers of the Sunday Tribune".[19] The National Consumer Agency confirmed it was considering prosecuting the Irish Mail on Sunday for a breach of the Consumer Protection Act[20] and the secretary of the National Union of Journalists, described the move by the paper as "crass and cynical" He added: “This was a cynical marketing exercise and represents a new low in Irish journalism. There can be no justification for the decision to reproduce the Sunday Tribune masthead instead of the Sunday Mail ’s own masthead.”[21] The following July, the Mail paid "a six figure sum" to settle a legal action brought by the receiver for "passing off".[22]

In July 2011, the newspaper refused to pass on the Government's VAT reduction to its readers. Taoiseach Enda Kenny said that businesses to which the new lower VAT rate applied would be "failing Ireland" if they did not pass on the reduction. Labour TD Aodhan O Riordain said: "I really think the Daily Mail's refusal to pass on the Government's VAT cut represents a real slap in the face to Irish consumers." It is estimated the Daily Mail will save approximately €750,000 as a result of this decision.[23] The Phoenix Magazine noted however that the Irish Daily Mail "with a cover price of €1, the Mail is one of the cheapest daily newspapers in the country and is 85c cheaper than the Indo (Irish Independent)". It also commented that Aodhan O Riordain's wife, Aine Kerr, was a former political correspondent with the Irish Independent, the paper's main rival who "was more than happy to print the story".[24]

Days later a damning report from Britain's Information Commissioner found that the Irish Daily Mail was involved in the illegal trade of obtaining personal information on driving licences, criminal records, vehicle registration searches, reverse telephone traces and mobile-phone conversations.[25]


  1. Irish Daily Mail launched today RTÉ News
  2. Dan Milmo Daily Mail's new edition targets O'Reilly's Irish Independent, The Guardian, 7 February 2006, accessed 5 September 2006
  3. Roy Greenslade Why the Daily Mail is doing badly in Ireland, The Guardian, 22 July 2006, accessed 5 September 2006
  4. Irish Daily Mail 2 February 2009, front page
  5. "2012 NNI Journalism Awards". National Newspapers of Ireland. Retrieved 19 October 2014.
  6. 1 2
  7. Cristina Odone Has Dacre lost his Midas touch in Ireland?, The Guardian, 28 August 2006, accessed 5 September 2006
  8. Greenslade, Roy (22 November 1999). "Give this family justice". MediaGuardian. London. p. 10. Retrieved 28 April 2010.
  9. The Daily Mail: Campaigning both For AND Against the HPV Vaccine in Different Countries Simultaneously, The Lay Scientist, 13 April 2009, accessed 16 April 2009
  10. Graham Linehan Jaw-dropping behaviour from The Daily Mail, 14 April 2009, accessed 16 April 2009.
  11. "Receiver appointed to Sunday Tribune". RTÉ News. 1 February 2011.
  12. "No Sunday Tribune for four weeks". RTÉ News. 2 February 2011.
  13. "Criticism of imitation Sunday Tribune masthead". RTÉ News. 6 February 2011.
  14. "'Plagiarism' of 'Tribune' denounced". The Irish Times. 6 February 2011.
  15. "Mail on Sunday criticised for Sunday Tribune trick". JOE. 6 February 2011.
  16. "Sunday Tribune editor outraged by fake Irish Mail on Sunday". The Guardian. 6 February 2011.
  17. "Editor defends Sunday Tribune mock-up". Irish Examiner. 6 February 2011.
  18. "Mail denies Sunday Tribune deception claims". RTÉ News. 14 November 2011.
  19. Wall, Martin. "Watchdog may prosecute 'Mail'". The Irish Times.
  20. Wall, Martin (7 February 2011). "Newspaper's 'Tribune' cover marks new low in Irish journalism, says NUJ". The Irish Times.
  21. O'Connell, Edel (8 July 2011). "'Mail' rapped for not passing VAT cut to readers". Irish Independent.
  22. "Young Bloods: Aodhan O Riordain" (PDF). Phoenix magazine. 12 August 2011. p. 17. Retrieved 14 August 2011.
  23. Reilly, Jerome (10 July 2011). "'Mail' scoops rival hacks in trade of information". Irish Independent.
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