Copies of Charlie Hebdo offered for thousands online as newsstands sell out

"No more Charlie" says this sign on a Paris newsstand Wednesday
"No more Charlie" says this sign on a Paris newsstand Wednesday Reuters/John Schults

Copies of Charlie Hebdo were being offered for internet auction for thousands of euros after all copies sold out on French newsstands on Wednesday morning. The print-run is to be extended to five million and an online version will appear in several languages.


Press freedom campaign Reporters Without Borders (RSF) slammed ebay auctions of the satirical weekly as “absolutely indecent” as copies of this week’s issue were offered for as much as 100,000 euros.

Click for RFI reports of the Charlie Hebdo killings

Some ebay accounts offered copies for auction even before publication and some had starting prices in the thousands of euros, although the actual sale price seemed to be much lower.

Other issues, such as the issue published last Wednesday – the day of the massacre – and the 2011 entitled Charia Hebdo, were also on offer for substantial sums.

All France’s newsstands had run out of the 700,000 copies of the paper originally distributed by 10.00am on Wednesday and the distributors said they would print more, raising the total number to five million.

Le Monde newspaper, RSF and the Courrier International weekly are collaborating to put the latest issue online with Arabic, English, and Spanish translations ready within 48 hours.

The delay was due to the difficulty in translating the paper’s style, said RSF’s Christophe Deloire.

“The murderers have screwed up,” he commented, referring to the claim by Chérif and Saïd Kouachi that they had “killed Charlie Hebdo” after the massacre.

One of the surviving journalists warned of fraudsters trying to collect money in the paper’s name in a tweet on Wednesday.

“There are no street collections for Charlie Hebdo!” he wrote. “Watch out for snakes who are exploiting it. Better to subscribe to #charlieHebdo.”

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