The Rise Of The Free Press

GUNNAR SEIJBOLD/AP

READING MATTER: Subway commuters in Stockholm, Sweden, read the free daily newspaper Metro, on their way to work

News travels fast on the London Underground during the morning rush hour. On a typical day, only commuters taking to the capital's subway trains before 9 a.m. can get hold of a copy of Metro, the free daily newspaper piled high in racks near the station entrance. Metro is a popular title, and copies are snapped up quickly. So getting a newspaper after 9 a.m. usually means paying for it — which a declining number of Britons seem prepared to do. Scanning his Metro while awaiting a train to work, Jonathan Cole, a 26-year-old stockbroker, sniffs at actually purchasing his morning...

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