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June 24, 2014, 10 a.m.
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LINK: www.youtube.com  ➚   |   Posted by: Joshua Benton   |   June 24, 2014

Watching the United States’ down-and-up-and-down draw against Portugal Sunday night, I was surprised to see an ad for The Times of London:

(That’s actually a U.K. version of the ad — the end-of-ad trial-subscription pitch I saw was for $1 rather than £1, if I recall correctly.)

A World Cup television audience is likely to be more Anglophile and internationalist than, say, the audience of Pretty Little Liars. But I’m unaware of any other instances where a non-American newspaper has bought a television ad aimed at an American audience. (The Guardian would be the only other likely candidate, but they don’t have a paywall to sell as The Times does. And a notional Daily Mail TV ad would just be 30 seconds of screaming, I guess.)

I emailed Katie Vanneck-Smith, chief marketing officer for News UK, and she told me that the ad is part of a broader international trial the newspaper is running. (It had previously run during some other World Cup games, including England’s ignominious performances.)

A British daily winning a Pulitzer Prize; everyone launching new editions in India and Australia; American newspapers chasing growth around the world; a U.K. tabloid gaining huge audiences in America — it’s another noteworthy marker of how much more globalized the English-language news business has become.

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