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The history of newspapers in South Africa dates back to 1800, when the Governor of the Cape Colony initiated the publishing of the government-controlled Cape Town Gazette and African Advertiser. The first privately owned newspaper, the SA Commercial Advertiser was published in 1824, the first Dutch language newspaper, De Zuid Afrikaan was published in 1830, the first African language newspaper, Umshumayeli Wendaba in 1837 and the first Afrikaans language newspaper, Die Afrikaanse Patriot, in 1876.

The current newspaper industry is in a fairly healthy state. According to a South African Audit Bureau of Circulation (ABC) survey in 1996, there were 36 daily and weekly urban newspapers in the country - 29 in English, four in Afrikaans, two in Zulu and one in Xhosa. An estimated 1.3 million newspapers are sold in South Africa daily. Some of the leading online newspapers are publishing by Tabloid media.

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