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Changes in the Audit Bureau of Circulations (ABC) format for reporting newspaper circulation permitted dailies to report gains in the most recent statistics published this morning (May 1). The figures are for the six months ended March 31 of this year. The figure which is comparable to a year ago is for total average circulation, which includes digital editions and branded editions such as Spanish language and community editions. Branded editions may include digital circulation.

The UT's total average circulation for Sundays rose to 364,454 from 296,272 in the report a year ago. Branded editions accounted for 73,400 of the figure. Monday-Friday was 230,742 from 218,614 a year ago, with branded editions accounting for 13,163 of the total. Both Sunday and Monday-Friday numbers included digital editions.

The Orange County Register reported large gains -- to 385,283 Sundays from 267,657 a year earlier with branded editions accounting for 88,016, and to 280,812 from 182,964 Monday-Friday with branded editions accounting for 97,217. The Los Angeles Times numbers also rose for both Sunday and Monday-Friday.

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Visduh May 1, 2012 @ 7:51 a.m.

While I suppose the ABC has to adjust to changing times in the industry, making reporting changes that show whopping gains like those quoted creates more questions than answers. If I were still using ABC data as I once did, I'd find that these new figures are nearly useless. Consistency is also necessary, and last year's apples compared to this year's oranges don't provide that at all.


Don Bauder May 1, 2012 @ 8:54 a.m.

"Total average circulation" is the only stat comparable with a year ago. It includes digital, branded editions, etc. You make an excellent point: daily newspaper advertising is plummeting. So are stocks of newspaper chains. Yet we are supposed to believe that total circulation is rising, because these other categories have been included, and we can't compare print editions with a year ago, or digital stats with a year ago. If I were an ad buyer, I would be suspicious. Best, Don Bauder


Spencer4Hire May 1, 2012 @ 7:59 a.m.

How abouts ye olde North County Times?


Don Bauder May 1, 2012 @ 8:59 a.m.

North County Times showed slippage, even with the new format. Sunday this year was 80,789, down from 83,151 a year ago, with branded editions (print and digital) accounting for 15,054. Monday-Friday this year was 75,606, down from 80,042 last year, with branded editions (print and digital) 16,840. Best, Don Bauder


Spencer4Hire May 1, 2012 @ 9:22 a.m.

Thanks! Needless to say, I cant find this on the NCT website.


Don Bauder May 1, 2012 @ 9:28 a.m.

I don't know whether UT, Register, and LA Times reported the figures either. Best, Don Bauder


Don Bauder May 1, 2012 @ 9:25 a.m.

Many of the changes were made last year, but comparability (in only total average circulation) was reported for the first time this year. Total average circulation, the number ABC now says is relevant, includes digital and branded editions (say, Spanish language editions or community editions, including digital). Digital (not comparable with the previous year) includes both replica and nonreplica. Replica digital must have the same editorial, layout and advertising as the print version. Nonreplica editions may have different editorial and advertising content of the print editions. Best, Don Bauder


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