Newspaper Circulation Falls Again

Discussion in 'Wall St. News' started by hughb, Apr 28, 2008.

  1. hughb


    Dead Trees
    Timber! Newspaper Circulation Falls Again
    Louis Hau, 04.28.08, 12:09 PM ET

    The slide in U.S. newspaper circulation is picking up speed.

    Daily circulation fell 3.57% from the same period last year for 530 U.S. newspapers reporting a Monday-through-Friday average for the six months ended March 31, according to data released Monday by the Audit Bureau of Circulations. Among the 601 papers reporting Sunday circulation, circulation dropped 4.59%. Those numbers compare to declines of 2.6% for daily circulation and 3.5% for Sunday circulation during the six months ended Sept. 30.

    Bucking the trend: Gannett's USA Today, the nation's largest-circulation daily, with average daily circulation of 2,284,219, up 0.27% and The Wall Street Journal, the second-largest daily, which said daily circulation inched up 0.35% to 2,069,463. The Journal was acquired in December by News Corp..

    Among other top papers, the numbers looked far worse. The New York Times, the third-largest newspaper, which is facing stiffer competition from the Journal, saw daily circulation slide 3.85% to 1,077,256, while Sunday circulation tumbled 9.3% to 1,476,400.

    But keep in mind that the semi-annual release of circulation data doesn't provide a complete picture of the newspaper industry's overall health. The industry's most pressing problem isn't the state of print circulation, which has been in decline since the mid-1980s. Instead, it is figuring out how to generate more advertising revenue from both its shrinking but still lucrative print product and its growing online properties. (See: "Newspaper Circulation: Parsing The Numbers".)

    Still, nothing here should be seen as good news. Some newspapers reporting modest gains in the previous reporting period saw circulation slide again. The Los Angeles Times, published by Tribune, reported a daily circulation decline of 5.1% and a 6.1% drop on Sunday, after notching a tiny 0.5% gain in daily circulation during the six months ended Sept. 30. The Philadelphia Inquirer, which reported a 2.3% increase in daily circulation in the last reporting period, saw Monday-through-Friday circulation slide 5.1% this time around, while Sunday circulation fell 6.3%.

    The biggest loser in average daily circulation among the 25 largest newspapers was A.H. Belo's Dallas Morning News, which absorbed a 10.6% drop to 368,313. Other large newspapers reporting sharp daily circulation declines included the New York Times Co.-owned Boston Globe (down 8.3%), The Star-Ledger of Newark, N.J. (down 7.4%), the Star Tribune of Minneapolis (down 6.7%) and the Detroit Free Press (down 6.45%). Those with smaller-than-average losses included the New York Daily News (down 2.1%), the New York Post (down 3.1%), the Houston Chronicle (down 1.8%), the St. Petersburg Times (down 2.1%) and the San Diego Union-Tribune (down 2.6%).

    Some mid-size and smaller papers reported gains in average daily circulation. They included MediaNews Group's San Jose Mercury News, which saw daily circulation rise 1.7% to 234,772; Gannett's Cincinnati Enquirer, which posted a 2.9% increase to 212,369; and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, which reported a 1.2% rise to 129,563. The biggest overall gain came at the Spanish-language El Diario La Prensa of New York, published by ImpreMedia, which saw daily circulation jump 7.6% to 53,856.
  2. hughb


    I don't necessarily agree with this - ad revenues are going to continue to drop as long as circulation drops, period.
  3. hughb


    It's good to see the WSJ is bucking the trend and increasing circulation. That tells me that just maybe the younger crowd has not given up totally on print newspapers. But then again, maybe it just means that the WSJ has managed to get a few more hotel chains to sign on as subscribers, inflating the circulation numbers.

    I love print newspapers, specifically the WSJ. Not just the good journalism and market data, but the whole process of reading the paper - opening it up, folding the pages, clipping the articles that interest me. I haven't been happy about the state of newspapers over the last few years. Well, except for my local paper, the San Diego Union/Tribune. That is one god-awful paper. I've noticed that they are using cheaper and cheaper newsprint as they look for ways to cut costs. You can almost see through it, and it has wrinkles and folds in it. Maybe I'll throw a party when they stop publishing it.
  4. I got rid of subscriptions to two printed newspapers a few years ago and saved $400 a year. I use part of that savings to buy a new wireless laptop every few years which has replaced my newspapers. I never have to worry that the newspaper doesn't arrive in time before I have to go to work. I don't have to bother with big piles of old newspapers for recycling etc.

    The only thing I miss from a newspaper is actually the advertising. Most newspapers publish an online edition but they don't contain all the advertising that you'd see in the print edition. If I want to shop for a new car, I still have to get a printed newspaper to see all the local ads for cars. If I want to see what's on sale at the local grocery store I have to find a printed flyer with the ads.

    Eventually the newspapers have to get smart and offer a full online newspaper. They have to include all the advertising in a convenient form which will help pay for the paper.
  5. hughb


    Computer/parts stores still advertise in the local paper too.

    Some newspapers complain how Wal Mart doesn't advertise with them, and I wonder about that myself. It seems like newspapers would be a good way for Wal Mart to advertise.

    It doesn't seem as though advertisers want to pay big bucks to advertise with an online version of the newspaper though. And you're right, newspapers better figure out how to get them to do it.
  6. There is some online advertising but most of it is far too slow to load. It's much more convenient and quicker to look at a paper flyer. Advertisers have to make internet ads simple and quick, forget all the fancy graphics, plugins, super slow adobe etc. Advertising artists might do a good job with print media but they're just a nuisance on the internet right now with todays technology. Send them back home with a can of spray paint so they can continue to decorate old buildings.
  7. LT701


    they're getting what they deserve

    they censor anything that does not fit the agenda they are part of, open borders in particular

    papers do not inform, they disinform, which is worse than being uninformed

    good riddence to them
  8. maxpi


    Same with the TV news, can't stand any of it.... USA Today is great though, upbeat reporting on good things, not the misery inducing details of the poor widow fighting the system for $783 a month when she is getting $684 a month damned formulaic articles from the incredibley depressing LA Times........ I could not stand that shit when I first saw it more than 4 dacades ago....... of course their readership is shrinking, they've made them mentally ill and they are working on their depression.....
  9. hughb


    Last year CNN ran a story titled something like, "where have the viewers gone" or something like that. It was a story about declining viewership in television. I bookmarked it, but when I went back to it a few months later the story was expired. The mainstream media is losing to the internet on all fronts, including radio. Even though you can see damage being done already, we haven't really seen the worst of it. If and when it gets to the point that television can not compete with the internet, there will be a fight. The people who control the information flow, the mainstream media, will not go quietly. they have nothing to lose by trying to impost Draconian Chinese-like censorship on the internet. We just may get to see it in our lifetimes too.
  10. no one cares about newspapers

    the future is online

    plus newspapers are full annoying ad filler, and stupid special interest stories no one cares about.
    #10     Apr 29, 2008