The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) has defined a newspaper as:  a serial publication which contains news on current events of special or general interest.  The individual parts are listed chronologically or numerically and appear usually at least once a week.  Newspapers usually appear without a cover ( FN 3), with a masthead, and are normally larger than 297mm x 420 mm [approximately 12 x 17 inches] in size.

This definition should be followed when deciding what publications to catalog as newspapers.  Treat as a periodical, any publication that doesn’t clearly fit the definition as explained below.

1.  This definition includes:

All general interest newspapers mainly reporting events that have occurred within the 24-hour period before going to press.

Non-daily general interest newspapers (e.g., local and neighborhood newspapers) that provide news covering a longer period of time, and also serve their readers as a primary source of general information due to their local origin.

Newspapers that contain current news of special interest, in addition to general information, and are targeted to clearly identified groups.  More common types of special interest newspapers include those directed to ethnic or racial groups, labor unions, farming community, religious groups, and political groups.

2.  This definition excludes:

Newsletter publications that are intended to report only news of a particular organization or institution, or that are specifically limited to coverage of a business, industry, craft, market, etc.

Shoppers and other publications issued primarily for advertising purposes.

See also:

Module 33.  Newspapers