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It is difficult for the Greek media to adapt to the digital age

31 August 2011 / 18:08:03  GRReporter
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The transition to the new digital era seems to be hard for the Greek media, according to a study of the Pantheon University. Newspapers still rank first in the race to provide information to the age group of 35-40 +. However, the younger readers and the people working on a computer are increasingly seeking information online and print media is not of particular interest for them. Information on the Internet is instantaneous and is updated almost in real time, unlike the print one, which in most cases reflects the event a day after it has happened.

According to recent data, the need for information of the Greeks has increased significantly in recent years and about 60% of the population between 13 and 70 years uses a computer and the Internet daily. 95% of the people in that age group use mobile phones and 22% of them are the last generation, which allows access to the Internet. 36% of the Greeks regularly use social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and 10% of mobile phones users use them to get online. In addition to information and social contacts, the survey shows that 12% of the Greeks use the network to shop from the comfort of their own homes.

In the digital age, print media still holds 60% of the readership, but many analysts believe that its time is over. Information is reaching modern people faster and in better quality and even fresh news printed on paper often seems like yesterday's bread.

The analysis examines the changes in the press, which today is also in crisis as the country itself. It makes a historical retrospect of the readership of the Greeks by the type of newspaper demanded over the years.

The politicization of the Greeks in the last three decades explains the numerous daily political newspapers, the study found. These editions are targeted primarily to the male audience aged over 45, which takes the reading of daily newspapers as part of their ritual. In the early 1990s, the daily newspapers of this type were eight and they attracted approximately 37% of the readers in the country. In 1995, they became 14 and their readers fell to 24% as television shifted newspapers in the field of information. With the increase in the number of publications with the same audience, there comes the reduction in demand of some newspapers. To attract more readers, publishers began to offer various attractive gifts with the sale of newspaper like pullouts, CDs or series of reissued books. A new threat comes for these issues between 2000-2005, which is called free press. These types of print media are initially targeted to women and younger readers, but later enter the news market more deeply.

The newspapers published once a week and especially in the weekends are another type of print media and they have their supporters too. These publications are targeted to readers aged 25-54 years. In 1990, there were 10 newspapers in this category with readership of 37%, which was stable in the coming years with an especially upward trend. In 2005, the Sunday papers were 17 and their audience slightly increased to 39%, while today, during one of the worst periods in the local press, there are 11 different weekly newspapers with readership exceeding 46%. Over time, various pullouts, further publications and brochures have become an integral part of Sunday newspapers.

The newspapers covering the economic reality in the country and the world are another type of print media, which has been growing during the years. It is targeted primarily to men over 35 years and is supported largely by permanent subscribers. Historically, the study of the Pantheon University shows that during the boom of the Athens Stock Exchange (1998-1999) when the indicator was around 6,000 basis points, unlike today when it is not able to reach even 1,000 bps, there is a record demand for economic publications. At that time, their circulation was four times higher than the regular circulation. However, the number of readers of economic publications remains low compared to other publications. In 1990, there were only two economic publications, which held only 1% of the readership. In 2000, the economic editions have become six, and their audience has grown to the modest 4%. Today, the economic press enjoys four popular newspapers for the sector, read by 2% of the audience of print media.

Things are a little better in the sporting press. It is targeted to the male audience aged 13-44 mainly. Particularly striking is the fact that the number of publications in this area has tripled in the last 20 years. In 1990, sports dailies were four and their readership did not exceed 8%. It was found in May 2011 that their number is 12 and their readers are 11% of the print media readership. Nevertheless, the most powerful in providing information about the sports events of the day remain online portals and sports TV shows.

Tags: EconomyMarketsInternetPressNewspaperOnline media
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