Friday, 26 February 2010

Newspapers face plunging circulations

Thanks to Jaxxland for this interesting, if alarming, story about newspaper sales in Wales.

According to the Press Gazette, the beleaguered regional newspaper industry continues to lose print readers at an alarming rate. Only two out of 86 daily regional titles managed to increase sales between July and December. Figures released today show a similarly dire situation in Wales:
  • South Wales Evening Post - 43,644 (down 8.8%)
  • South Wales Echo - 36,928 (down 11.1%)
  • Daily Post - 32,864 (down 5.0%)
  • Western Mail - 30,133 (down 10.6%)
  • South Wales Argus - 25,035 (down 7.6%)
  • Wrexham Leader - 18,368 (down 8.5%)

It remains to be seen whether the Leader's switch to a morning title helps stem the losses and whether that, in turn, impacts on the Daily Post. That has seen the lowest circulation fall in percentage terms - is that because of its willingness to campaign and break stories?

Jaxxland concludes by half-heartedly arguing for a print equivalent of the BBC. Although the figures look grim for the news corporations, local newspapers have proved resilient in the past. If they can cope with the internet challenge in a more imaginative way than they have so far, can continue to flourish. I hope so.

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