This is an automatically generated PDF version of the online resource retrieved on 2024/04/24 at 08:39
Global Media Registry (GMR) & VERA Files - all rights reserved, published under Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Global Media Registry

Print media: Readership on the decline

Print media took the hardest hit in this digital age. Before the advent of social media and easy access to information online, newspapers enjoyed high circulation and readership. The major publications — both tabloid and broadsheets — usually had two print runs, the first edition for early distribution to provinces  covering most of the country.

In 2019, only two or three out of 100 people in urban areas were reading newspapers while five or six for every hundred people read them in rural areas.

Several factors led to a decline in newspaper readership. There was the cost of newspapers, whose pages started to dwindle, and the easy accessibility like newsstands, which were nowhere to be found. Gone too were the mobile vendors who used to peddle them in the streets.

The pandemic in 2020 exacerbated this downtrend. Mobility was restricted, while online sources and social media became the go-to for news and information. TV and radio stations also broadcast on a limited basis, and most networks migrated to online platforms. 

The change in consumer behavior - people turning to online sources for news and information with just a mobile device and Internet data - was the biggest blow to print media. Even the major publishers that could afford to continue printing physical newspapers accepted that to stay relevant and regain their market share, they needed to cross platforms and go where the audience was. 

Only the long-time publishers (Manila Bulletin, Philippine Daily Inquirer, and The Philippine Star, and their affiliate publications) that offered subscriptions, maintained a strong distribution network, and had other enterprises to sustain their media outlets emerged on top of audience share surveys. 

See below the comparison of top newspapers for the 2016 and 2023 iteration of the Media Ownership Monitor Philippines: 
Print Outlets
  • Project by
    VERA Files
    Global Media Registry
  • Funded by
    Logo of Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany Manila