Dan Rattiner (b. 1939 in New York City), whose name is pronounced /ra teen er/, is an American journalist and newspaper publisher. He is widely credited with having founded the concept of the free newspaper in 1960.

On summer vacation from college, he published the first issue of the Montauk Pioneer on July 1, 1960, in the fishing resort town of Montauk, New York. In 1965, Rattiner co-founded the Manhattan-based underground newspaper The East Village Other with Walter Bowart, Allan Katzman, and John Wilcock. He also founded The Block Island Times in 1970. Rattiner hosted a weekly radio show “The Hamptons Report” on WQXR for six years during the 1990s.

In the 50 years since its founding (1960–2010), Rattiner’s grew into Dan’s Papers, a free weekly newspaper with editions chronicling the year-round and summer populations of the neighboring communities collectively known as The Hamptons. Dan’s Papers has an online presence at danshamptons.com.

Rattiner writes more than 300 articles a year on topics including science, humor, sports, world affairs, architecture, history, and scandal. In 1975, Time published a feature story about him entitled “Hoaxer of the Hamptons,” in which it covered his penchant for creating East End myths and legends. In 1969 he wrote an article which resulted in demonstrations that saved the Montauk Lighthouse from being torn down by the United States Coast Guard as part of its belt-tightening program, a tale that is featured at montauklighthouse.com. In 2011, Rattiner was sued forlibel and defamation in United States district court for publishing an article in Dan’s Papers in 2010 which stated a forensic art expert and his family did jail time and were forgers. The plaintiff sought $2 Million in damages from Rattiner, The case was settled in September. Terms of the settlement were kept confidential.

Rattiner has written 12 books, including a memoir In the Hamptons: My Fifty Years With Farmers, Fishermen, Writers, Artists, Billionaires and Celebrities, published by Random House in 2008. A chapter of the book was reprinted in its entirety in NewsdayThe New York Times and other publications gave “In the Hamptons” rave reviews and it sold well.[6] It is now available in paperback. The Hamptons Too: Further Encounters With Farmers, Fishermen, Artists, Billionaires, and Celebrities, with a foreword by Alec Baldwin, was published by the State University of New York Press in May 2010.

Rattiner is also a published cartoonist, whose work has appeared in EsquireThe RealistSaturday Review of Literature and Mclean’s in Canada, and whose cartoons have been exhibited at the Tower Gallery in Southampton, New York, and the Winter Tree Gallery in Sag Harbor, New York.