Is it poetic justice, or a reflection of our thirst for news, that one of the world's media hotspots has itself spawned such a large number of media outlets?
Northern Ireland has many daily, provincial and Sunday newspapers, numerous specialist magazines, two television broadcasters and four main radio stations. They can be a good way of getting to grips with our complex national psyche so, to help you get under our skin, here are some of Belfast's brightest media luvvies.
Belfast Telegraph tel. (+44) 0)28 9026 4000. Known colloquially as the 'Tele', the first copies hit Belfast's streets in 1870. It takes a non-partisan line and its website is particularly popular with overseas ex pats, presumably pining for the green fields and random news stories of home. The iconic building on Royal Avenue has now been sold,marking the newspaper's first move in its illustrious history.
News Letter The Metro Building, 6-9 Donegall Sq South, tel. (+44) (0)28 9089 7700. Founded in 1737, the News Letter is the world's oldest English-language newspaper still publishing under its original name. Its greatest world exclusive came on August 23, 1776 when it ran a cover story on the American Declaration of Independence, a copy of which had fetched up on Ireland's shores after hitting stormy waters off Derry en route to King George lll. The News Letter takes a pro-Unionist line, and runs a weekly column in the Ulster Scots dialect. Former PM Tony Blair opened its shiny new city centre offices in May 2007, and Queen Elizabeth ll described the News Letter's longevity as "an achievement in which the people of Northern Ireland can take great pride". Stop by its ground floor bookshop and treat yourself to some locally-inspired reads.