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National is an adjective (adverb form: nationally) used to describe a product or publication that is distributed throughout an entire nation, e.g., a national magazine. It implies that the item is available for purchase or access anywhere in the country. Comparatively, some products or publications are described as "local" or "regional", and are distributed only locally or regionally.
- Newsweek is a national (U.S.) magazine; Minnesota Monthly is a regional magazine.
- USA Today is a national (U.S.) newspaper; The Queens Chronicle is a local newspaper.
- Post Raisin Bran is a breakfast cereal that is distributed nationally in the United States, and can be purchased almost anywhere; Quisp is in limited distribution, and cannot be found in many areas.
Internet commerce has enabled many regional or local products to be sold and marketed nationwide.
The use of the word national with respect to distribution should not be confused with another sense of meaning of that word, which is having to do with a nation or associated with the character of a nation. For example, in the United States the hamburger or hot dog is often described as a national dish, and baseball as a national sport. This use of the term is used to identify the thing with the character or trademark of the country itself, and is sometimes associated with nationalism.
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