By the eighteenth century, newspapers had become firmly established as a means of spreading news of European and world affairs, as well as of local concerns, within European society. One of the first true newspapers was the Dutch paper Nieuwe Tidingen It began publication in the early seventeenth century at about the same time that the overseas trading company called the Dutch East India Company was formed The same ships that brought goods back from abroad brought news of the world, too. Dutch publishers had an advantage over many other publishers around Europe because the Netherlands' highly decentralized political system made its censorship laws very difficult to enforce. Throughout Europe in the seventeenth century, governments began recognizing the revolutionary potential of the free press and began requiring licenses of newspapers – to control who was able to publish news. Another tactic, in France and elsewhere on the continent from the 1630s onward, was for governments to sponsor official newspapers. These state publications met the increasing demand for news but always supported the government's views of the events of the day. By the eighteenth century, new conditions allowed newspapers to flourish as never before First,demand for news increased as Europe's commercial and political interests spread around the globe – merchants in London, Liverpool, or Glasgow, for example, came to depend on early news of Caribbean harvests and gains and losses in colonial wars Europe's growing commercial strength also increased distribution networks for newspapers. There were more and better roads, and more vehicles could deliver newspapers in cities and convey them to outlying towns Newspaper publishers made use of the many new sites where the public expected to read, as newspapers were delivered to cafes and sold or delivered by booksellers. Second, many European states had established effective postal systems by the eighteenth century.It was through the mail that readers outside major cities and their environs – and virtually all readers in areas where press censorship was exercised firmly – received their newspapers. One of the most successful newspapers in Europe was a French-language paper (one of the many known as La Gazette,) published in Leiden, in the Netherlands, which boasted a wide readership in France and among elites throughout Europe. Finally, press censorship faltered in one of the most important markets for news – England – at the turn of the eighteenth century after 1688. debate raged about whether the Parliament or the Crown had the right to control the press, and in the confusion the press flourished. The emergence of political parties further hampered control of the press because political decisions in Parliament now always involved compromise, and many members believed that an active press was useful to that process. British government's control of the press was reduced to taxing newspapers, a tactic that drove some papers out of business. Eighteenth-century newspapers were modest products by modern Western standards. Many were published only once or twice a week instead of every day, in editions of only a few thousand copies. Each newspaper was generally only four pages long. Illustrations were rare, and headlines had not yet been invented. Hand-operated wooden presses were used to print the papers, just as they had been used to print pamphlets and books since the invention of printing in the fifteenth century. Yet these newspapers had a dramatic impact on their reading public Regular production of newspapers (especially of many competing newspapers) meant that news was presented to the public at regular intervals and in manageable amounts. Even strange and threatening news from around the world became increasingly easy for readers to absorb and interpret Newspaper readers also felt themselves part of the public life about which they were reading This was true partly because newspapers, available in public reading rooms and in cafes, were one kind of reading that occupied an increasing self-aware and literate audience. Newspapers also were uniquely responsive to their readers. They began to carry advertisements, which both produced revenue for papers and widened readers' exposure to their own communities. Even more important was the inauguration of letters to the editor in which readers expressed their opinions about events Newspapers thus became venues for the often rapid exchange of news and opinions.