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PAUL JULIUS REUTER: news man

Paul Julius Reuter is a person of note in the information gathering business. 

In 1851, Reuter moved to London. After failures in 1847 and 1850, attempts by the Submarine Telegraph Company to lay an undersea telegraph cable across the English Channel, from Dover to Calais, promised success. Reuter set up his “Submarine Telegraph” office in October 1851 just before the opening of that undersea cable in November, and he negotiated a contract with the London Stock Exchange to provide stock prices from exchanges in continental Europe in return for access to the London prices, which he then supplied to stockbrokers in Paris. In 1865, Reuter’s private firm was restructured, and it became a limited company (a corporation) called the Reuter’s Telegram Company. Reuter had been naturalised as a British subject in 1857.Paul Julius Reuter noticed that, with the electric telegraph, news no longer required days or weeks to travel long distances. In the 1850s, the 34-year-old Reuter was based in Aachen – then in the Kingdom of Prussia, now in Germany – close to the borders with the Netherlands and Belgium. He began using the newly opened Berlin–Aachen telegraph line to send news to Berlin. However, the telegraph did not extend the 76 miles (122 km) to Brussels, Belgium’s capital city and financial center. Reuter saw an opportunity to speed up news service between Brussels and Berlin by using homing pigeons to bridge that gap.

Reuter’s agency built a reputation in Europe for being the first to report news scoops from abroad, such as Abraham Lincoln’s assassination. Almost every major news outlet in the world now subscribes to Reuters’ services, which operates in over 200 cities in 94 countries in about 20 languages.

http://www.reuters.com/

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