Friday, April 2, 2010

Most Americans Envision Newspapers' Demise

From MediaDailyNews:

As if the newspaper business didn't have enough bad news to deal with, roughly half of Americans over the age of 12 believe that the medium of print newspapers will cease to exist altogether at some point.

While the survey didn't ask for a predicted date of demise for print newspapers, leaving the time frame somewhat open-ended, 49% of respondents agreed with this statement: "In the future, there will be no more newspapers because everyone will be getting their news over the Internet."

Regardless of when this is supposed to occur, the belief reflects the widespread perception (among at least half the population) of a medium in decline.

What's more, the 49% figure is a big increase over just three years ago, when 27% agreed with the same statement. Arbitron Senior Vice President of marketing Bill Rose summed up the findings: "The average consumer's expectation that newspapers will 'always be there' has eroded dramatically since we began tracking this question in 2007."

According to the most recent figures from the Newspaper Association of America, total print newspaper revenues have declined a vertiginous 47%, from $46.6 billion in 2006 to just $24.8 billion in 2009.

The last couple of years also brought the closing of a number of large regional dailies, including the New York Sun, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Rocky Mountain News, Tucson Citizen and Cincinnati Post, as well as its sibling, The Kentucky Post.

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