Liberal Propaganda is Not Selling Ads

Russ Steele

The value of an ad depends on how many eyeballs publisher and editors can get to read that ad. As fewer people are buying newspapers the ads in newspapers are less valuable.  A magazine editor once told me that the reason she buys my articles was to have some text to keep the ads from bumping into each other.  However, my articles have to be interesting enough to keep the readers coming back to read more ads. In newspapers the buyers are looking for news and insight.  When that news and insight becomes one-sided, open minded readers look for their news and insight elsewhere, often on the Internet.  The numbers below indicate that more and more readers are abandoning the big city progressive propaganda machines for alternatives. The following graphic is from Mark Perry’s Carpe Diem

The chart above displays total annual print newspaper advertising revenue based on actual annual data from 1950 to 2010, and estimated annual revenue for 2011 using quarterly data through the third quarter, from the Newspaper Association of America.  The advertising revenues have been adjusted for inflation, and appear in the chart as millions of constant 2011 dollars.  Estimated revenues of $20.7 billion in 2011 will be the lowest annual  amount spent on newspaper advertising since $19.5 billion in 1951, exactly 60 years ago. 

The decline in newspaper ad revenues to a 60-year low is amazing by itself, but the sharp decline in recent years is pretty stunning.  Last year’s ad revenues of about $21 billion were less than half of the $46 billion spent just four years ago in 2007, and less than one-third of the $64 billion spent in 2000.  

I think the sharp decline resulted from the ability of readers to fact check the newspapers they were read on the Internet and they found out they were being fed propaganda rather than the facts. If one is getting the Democrat’s talking points by e-mail why buy newspaper to see them regurgitated on the printed page?

It is very possible, that many of leading big city propaganda machines will soon be footnotes in the history of publishing.  Stay tuned!

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About Russ Steele
Freelance writer and climate change blogger. Russ spent twenty years in the Air Force as a navigator specializing in electronics warfare and digital systems. After his service he was employed for sixteen years as concept developer for TRW, an aerospace and automotive company, and then was CEO of a non-profit Internet provider for 18 months. Russ's articles have appeared in Comstock's Business, Capitol Journal, Trailer Life, Monitoring Times, and Idaho Magazine.

4 Responses to Liberal Propaganda is Not Selling Ads

  1. gjrebane says:

    I wonder how the tie-in to online advertising affects the above plot since there has been a shift of ads from print to both Internet and the multiple cable channels now available. Another correlation that would be of interest is print readership vs print advertising.

  2. Michael Anderson says:

    Everything you know is wrong…

    • Greg Goodknight says:

      And I think they’re all Bozos on Pelline’s bus.

      (One obscure Firesign Theater reference deserves another…)

      The business of most media is delivering eyeballs to advertisements. Print and broadcast are in the same business. Social media too; if you are a Facebook user, you are the product being sold to commercial interests and Facebook is just the flypaper that keeps you there.

      If you don’t deliver the eyeballs, the money for advertising eventually goes elsewhere.

  3. Russ says:

    by Stephen Frank on 02/26/2012

    Instead of buying a dead tree with ink on it, you can inconvenience electrons, to get information. Now the LA Times thinks by charging you for reading more than 15 stories a month you will pay for the information you already get free.

    “After the 99 cents for the first four weeks, the rate will rise to $1.99 a week in a package that also includes the Sunday newspaper. Digital-only access will cost $3.99. Online access will be included at no extra charge for print subscribers.”

    Why pay for misleading stories, half truths and omissions that are harmful to the elites? In the end the business model of the dead tree turning into an electron does not work. Folks won’t pay for propaganda—they want facts. As long as climate dictators lie about global warming, that paper can not be trusted on anything. What do you think?

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