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National Newspaper Columnists Day – April 18, 2023

National Newspaper Columnists’ Day is observed on April 18 every year. This celebration aims to honor the work of columnists. A columnist is a person who produces written works to be published in a series, generally offering commentary and opinions on current events or topics such as love, relationships, and careers. Columnists have different personalities, which is demonstrated in their written work. Some columnists lighten the mood or play a role with their flavor of humor or satire. Others provide different perspectives and hard facts based on solid research. Whatever their personality or style, each columnist’s hard work connects them to the people.

History of National Newspaper Columnists Day

The National Society of Newspaper Columnists, founded in 1977, created National Newspaper Columnists’ Day. It was established on April 18, in memory of the day columnist Ernie Pyle was killed in World War II in 1945. He was a Pulitzer Prize-winning American journalist and war correspondent, best known for his stories about American soldiers during World War II.

He wrote for the Scripps-Howard newspaper syndicate as a roving human-interest reporter from 1935 to 1941. This earned him wide acclaim for his simple accounts of ordinary people across North America. He lent the same distinctive, folksy style of his human-interest stories to his wartime reports from the European theater and the Pacific theater when the United States entered World War II. In 1944, Pyle won the Pulitzer Prize for his newspaper accounts of ‘dogface’ infantry soldiers from a first-person perspective. He was killed during the Battle of Okinawa by enemy fire on Iejima, Japan.

The purpose of this day is to appreciate the dangerous work journalists do to bring information to people. They are also in charge of creating public opinion, keeping people in power accountable, and bringing to light important stories. The day is especially dedicated to journalists and columnists around the world. They work in dangerous situations with the single purpose of uncovering the truth for the benefit of society.

National Newspaper Columnists Day timeline

1939
Word War II Starts

World War II starts in Europe on September 1, when Germany invades Poland.

1940
Pyle Goes to London

Pyle initially goes to London to cover the Battle of Britain.

1945
Pyle is Killed

Pyle is killed while covering the invasion of Okinawa in Japan.

1977
The National Society of Newspaper Columnists is Established

The National Society of Newspaper Columnists establishes National Newspaper Columnists’ Day.

National Newspaper Columnists Day FAQs

What personality do journalists have?

The average journalist tends to be enthusiastic, persuasive, and much more focused on the big picture than details or processes.

How do I become a journalist?

The first step is pursuing a bachelor’s degree, which is the minimum education level for most media corporations.

What are the five types of journalism?

The five types of journalism are investigative reporting, photojournalism, sports coverage, entertainment reporting, and watchdog journalism.

National Newspaper Columnists Day Activities

  1. Read a newspaper column

    This day is an opportunity to learn more about the history of newspapers and journalism. You can read a newspaper column that talks about columnists’ history.

  2. Use the hashtag #NationalNewspaperColumnistsDay

    Write a post on social media sharing information about the hard work that journalists do. Do not forget to use the hashtag #NationalNewspaperColumnistsDay.

  3. Thank columnists

    Write to your favorite newspaper or magazine and thank them for all the work they do. If you happen to know a columnist personally, celebrate this day with them.

5 Facts About World War II Journalists

  1. They were sent to cover battles

    A majority of the journalists were sent overseas to cover the battles from the frontlines.

  2. They wore uniforms

    They had to wear uniforms, although they were not considered combatants and were not allowed to carry sidearms or fire any kind of weapon at the enemy.

  3. Many journalists died

    They were so close to the actual fighting that many American journalists were killed, wounded, or captured.

  4. They sent the stories everywhere

    After jotting down stories, they returned to the press headquarters to type them up, clear them through censors, and send them back by radio to London for cable transmission to New York and other cities.

  5. They signed a pledge

    This was because they had to clear all stories through military censorship.

Why We Love National Newspaper Columnists Day

  1. It’s good gossip

    Great journalists love good gossip, including politics, economics, or any social matter. They are the first ones to know the gossip and the first ones to tell people about it.

  2. They provide current information

    Journalism is important because it gives current and relevant information about everything. It was Benjamin Franklin who said, “Whoever would overthrow the liberty of a nation must begin by judging the freeness of speech.”

  3. They provide transparency

    Journalism is vital to ensuring transparency and avoiding corruption. It is also important when we talk about the right to free speech.

National Newspaper Columnists Day dates

YearDateDay
2023April 18Tuesday
2024April 18Thursday
2025April 18Friday
2026April 18Saturday
2027April 18Sunday

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