Is it considered informal to refer to tabloid and broadsheet newspapers as a "tabloid" and "broadsheet", as opposed to "tabloid newspaper" and "broadsheet newspaper"? I'm writing a piece in the style of a broadsheet editorial for my coursework, and trying to save words, but I still need to write within genre and want to know if "tabloid" or "broadsheet" on its own sounds too colloquial for a broadsheet publication.

  • I don't think they do at all. But the problem nowadays is in defining what is a tabloid and what is a broadsheet. The terms date from a time when trash newspapers (the Sun, the Mirror, The Mail etc) were all of 'tabloid' size, and serious and intelligent newspapers were of 'broadsheet size'. But since the Times and the Independent have gone tabloid in size, whilst retaining editorial sanity, it only leaves the Telegraph as a true 'broadsheet'. The Guardian is neither one nor the other with its 'Berliner' format. – WS2 Mar 10 '14 at 19:48
  • You misunderstood the question. I'm not asking about the difference between tabloid and broadsheet, I'm asking if it's preferable to write "tabloid newspaper" and "broadsheet newspaper" to "tabloid" and "broadsheet" on their own, when writing in a formal register. – Lou Mar 10 '14 at 20:35
  • And the first sentence of my comment answers that question. – WS2 Mar 10 '14 at 22:25
  • Well it's not exactly helpful to answer a usage question with "it isn't used." It's inevitable that my coursework is going to use the words "tabloid" and "broadsheet" because it's about the homogenisation of those two genres. So it's important that I know if using the the terms as standalone nouns is acceptable usage. – Lou Mar 10 '14 at 22:35
  • And I said that I thought that it was acceptable to use them as standalone terms. Those words, tabloid and broadsheet, are not used in connection with anything other than newspapers. – WS2 Mar 11 '14 at 18:18

You can use "tabloid" and "broadsheet" on their own. Appending "newspaper" after each will probably feel overly verbose.

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