|In a stark contrast to the circulation figures, magazine readership for the year to March 2013 was largely positive for the industry, with 67 titles recording an increases compared to 63 seeing declines. The magazine reading population grew 2.4 per cent in the year to March to 12.4 million readers, up from 12.1 million. However, Newspaper readership saw another period of negative numbers in the year to March 2013, according to Roy Morgan. Only 13 newspapers recorded increases across Australia, out of a total of 54.
As reported in AdNews ,Magazine Publishers Australia executive director Robin Parkes said: "Readership of magazines is still remarkably strong, which shows the high levels of consumer interest. Australian consumers still love their magazines with 93 per cent of adults reading magazines and 13.5 million magazines sold in Australia every month.
The strongest category was Fishing, which surged 16.5 per cent overall, bolstered by the likes of Fresh Water Fishing Australia and Fishing World (owned by AdNews publisher Yaffa), which jumped 5.7 per cent.
Computing, Games and Info Tech was once again a starring category, jumping 10 per cent in total, led by Hyper's massive 84.1 per cent jump. This category is one of the most consistent performers, although Bauer's TechLife did experience a 40.6 per cent drop in readership.
The largest category decline was experienced by TV, falling 23.9 per cent; then Men's, dropping 18.2 per cent; followed by Women's Youth down 5.4 per cent. Food & Entertainment and Women's Lifestyle also dropped.
Meanwhile, Roy Morgan's new 'masthead readership' numbers, which combine print and online figures (and now include app figures for the first time) were not overly impressive. While year on year comparisons cannot be made yet, a comparison of March figures with June figures showed a decline for the majority of the titles.
The largest decline in the Newspaper sector was experienced by Fairfax's Sun-Herald, which fell 21.4 per cent. The biggest increase was the Monday to Friday edition of the Newcastle Herald, which increased 13 per cent.
AdNews reported that as the figures hit the market today, News Limited chief executive Kim Williams has described the existing measurement system as "an outdated quarterly reporting timetable".
"This new methodology will provide the most relevant and contemporary readership measurement capturing the true picture of media consumption across all platforms - print and digital," Williams said. "It will include details on engagement and consumption as never before.
He said the new system will hit the market in the first quarter of the 2013/2014 financial year.