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Crisis and growth of digital publishing

  • According to new Italian Censis reports for 2010, in Italy information on web is getting more and more advantage from the slow and steady abandon of traditional media.

According to new Italian Censis reports for 2010, in Italy information on web is getting more and more advantage from the slow and steady abandon of traditional media.

The crisis of publishing in the strict sense begins to take its first steps with the spread of online sales and digital media to carry content (cd rom, dvd) and provide services such as databases and digital services. From 2006 to 2009, the publishing market has lost 7.2% of market share (a decrease of -5.3% in 2009 to 2008), while the digital market, which has also suffered loss of 9.6% over 2008 , recorded in the long run an increase of 312.6% in 2009 and has engaged a share of 13.6% of total publishing market. Data are also positive for the first months of 2010, especially for online sales with an increase of 24.5%, and the spread of e-books, still shy in Italy since it covers only the 0. 1% of the market, but with a positive trend that shares a tripled market during the year 2009-2010.

If we compare traditional print readers and online readers, we can see a positive trend for all major Italian titles which also provide an online version. In particular, La Repubblica, in the second place after La Gazzetta dello Sport for its number of both on and offline readers, in 2010 showed that 19.6% of the total number of readers rely on digital version. Afterwards, Il Sole 24 Ore has 18.2% of its audience visiting the Web magazine. In third place, the online version of Corriere della Sera took a share of 15.1% of total readers.

If printed newspaper manages to escape from the crisis by converting resources into digital format, the same cannot be said of television news. Analyzing the available data for the major channels from September 2009 to September 2010, it is clear a great loss of share especially for TV news which historically has a high share of viewers. Tg1 loses 3.3% share, while the Tg5 get to lose 5 % points. The cause of this waster of consensus has been deduced from the characteristic information of the agenda that seems to lose in quality and variety of information. From this point of view, the limitation of space faced by both newspapers and the TV news, is largely surpassed by Internet where is easier to manage the distribution and diversity of content.

The only problem that still raises the online information is linked to the free or not availability of its contents, which usually are provided for these newspapers in hybrid forms for the free press coverage and in a payment form for the ancillary services.

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