Thursday, March 25, 2010

It’s Official: 2009 Was Worst Year for the Newspaper Business in Decades

It’s no surprise that 2009 was the worst year the newspaper business has had in decades, but the scale of the damage, shown in figures released Wednesday by the Newspaper Association of America, is stunning.


Advertising revenue fell 27.2 percent, or more than $10 billion, from 2008 – which was, at the time, the industry’s worst year since the Depression. From its peak in 2005, newspaper ad revenue dropped 44.2 percent, from more than $49.4 billion to less than $27.6 billion last year. The last time advertisers spent less on newspapers was in 1986.


Online ad revenue, long the fast-rising hope of a deeply troubled industry, fell 11.8 percent last year, though some publishers say that it is growing again in 2010. Internet ads accounted for 10 percent of all newspaper ad revenue.


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