Small papers that show circ gains

The Audit Bureau of Circulation released it’s bi-annual Fas-Fax report within the past week, and there have been plenty of headlines about big declines at big newspapers.

In a previous post, I suggested that Alan Jacobson talk about how circ is doing at newspapers he’s redesigned. In concert with that post, I wrote to E&P reporter Jennifer Saba and suggested she acquire the full Fas-Fax report, or at least the top 150 markets, and publish it. Her response: Request the report yourself. She referred me to the Fas-Fax Web site.

Interestingly, the ABC will only release the report to “accredited press,” whatever that means. And by that, I mean, there is no agency that credentials members of the press (unless you count local law enforcement, which hardly seems relevant to an ABC report).

I’ve only assumed so far, and maybe it’s a false assumption, that a blogger working independently would not rise to the level of credentialed in the eyes of ABC.

I have no idea why E&P wouldn’t want to request the entire report, but it bugs me that they won’t. Maybe there is some logical explanation.

Meanwhile, E&P has posted a story about small papers with circulation gains — it seems to be a largely self-reporting effort (newspapers telling E&P of their own circulation gains). Still, it’s an interesting list — circ is looking good at many small papers.

I’d like to know more. I’d like to see the Fax-Fax for at least the top 150 markets.

UPDATE: Ms. Saba sends this e-mail:

I think there’s a misunderstanding regarding my response. I *have* the full FAS-FAX report which includes 770 dailies. The report is organized alphabetically, by paper. It does not rank the papers in any order. ABC provided a separate list ranking the top 25 papers based on the FAS-FAX.

I get requests for lots of reports — circulation and otherwise — and I cannot pass them along. Reporters receive reports because of that caveat. I’m happy to send people directly to the source, which I did when you requested.

My question back, then, is why hasn’t she published the 770 dailies numbers?

UPDATE II: obtained some of the numbers I couldn’t (maybe I didn’t try hard enough, but it just seems reasonable to me that E&P would publish this data — or have done the redesign story itself (and maybe it has by this point, but I haven’t seen it)).

[tags]newspapers, redeisgn, circulation, abc[/tags]

This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged by . Bookmark the permalink.

3 thoughts on “Small papers that show circ gains

  1. Hey, Howard, thanks for the link.

    I’ve been gathering string on this for awhile. ABC puts some of that data on their site. If you go here you can the most recent FAS-FAX top-line circ numbers. That’s how I got the March and Sept 06 numbers. The rest I got from sources like old E&P yearbooks or Googling. There are always press accounts when the ABC numbers are released, so you can usually find those with a big of digging through the Google results. (The British results came from The Guardian, which tracks this stuff religiously. Like to see E&P get that aggressive.) I’m sure the report E&P’s got, though, is much more in-depth than just top-line numbers. They could probably do a much better job at it than I did, since they’ve probably got single-copy/home-delivery breakdowns, etc.

Leave a Reply