The big newspapers return to the OJD in July after three months without being audited for “force majeure reasons”.

The big newspapers return to the OJD in July after three months without being audited for “force majeure reasons”.

The big newspapers return to the OJD in July after three months without being audited for “force majeure reasons”.

A rotary press of a paper newspaper in a stock image

The big printed newspapers have been audited again in the Dissemination Justification Office (OJD) after a three-month break forced by Covid. In this way, the figures for July and August to which Invertia has had access confirm the harsh impact of the pandemic on sales and disseminationwith falls ranging from 20% to 40% depending on the header.

A period in which all the newspapers marked new historical lows and relevant events took place such as ABCsurpassed The world in diffusion, something never seen until now. “The fall of the paper press has accelerated for three years,” say industry executives when asked by this newspaper. The reason it is the only one of the big newspapers that has chosen to remain unaudited.

In any case, the feeling in the sector is that it will no longer return to pre-covid levels and that from now on the decline will continue, slower, but just as sustained. “We do not believe that paper will disappear”, but it is getting closer to being residual and becoming a luxury product”, these sources indicate.

Examples? In July, the five big headers –El País, ABC, El Mundo, La Vanguardia and El Periódico– added 272,900 daily average circulation copies, a loss of 118,788 copies compared to the data for July 2019. In the case of the month of August, the sum of the circulation of these newspapers reached 279,547, with 99,899 fewer copies.

In sales, the situation is not much better. These five headers added 173,604 sales copies to the number in July, 53,031 copies less. In August they reached 184,732 copies, 42,648 less. The impact of the closure of many points of sale, added to the impossibility of distributing their subscriptions in times of pandemic, has generated an explosive cocktail for the sector.

Fall for newspapers

By headlines, the leader is still The country,but in July it registered a new historical minimum with 71,343 copies and a drop of 33% compared to the data of July 2019. In August it improved to 75,837 copies, a year-on-year drop of 29%. Fifteen years ago this newspaper far exceeded a circulation of 400,000 copies.

In the case of the sale to the number The countryregistered 59,553 copies in July, 24% less, and 64,634 in August, a 17% decline.

Second place went to The vanguard which reached 67,158 circulation copies in July and 67,554 in August. In sales it registered 17,331 and 19,006, respectively.

follows him ABCwhich for the first time exceeds The world in diffusion. In July, the Vocento newspaper registered 53,124 copies (-20%) and in August 54,013 (-17%). In sales it reached 38,890 copies (-17%) in July and 42,035 in August (-14%).

The world It is in fourth place with 45,620 copies in July (-42%) and 47,512 (-38%) in August. In sale to the number registered 35,421 (-29%) in July and 37,646 (-24%). in diffusion, The newspaperclosed at 35,655 and 34,631 and at 21,409 and 21,411 in sales.

Quarterly break

Why were the newspapers three months without control? The statutes of the OJD admit that the headers can suspend their measurement for “reasons of force majeure” and they did so El País, El Mundo, ABC, El Periódico and La Vanguardia from March 15 to June 30. The reasonIt has not yet been audited again because it continues to allege these exceptional measures.

The headers alleged that its dissemination was severely affected during the state of alarm -and the de-escalation- because many points of sale closed, due to mobility limitations and the closure of bars, usual points of purchase and reading of copies. on paper.

However, advertisers pressed for audience data to return, forcing them to resume measurement in July and August, with the exception of The reason, which still does not activate the OJD audit.

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