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May / June 2020

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This Month's Features:

Verified Would Like to Welcome...
Mobile Web Traffic Up 30.6% Since 2017
Cosmic Irony: Big Chain-owned Newspapers Aren't Getting Government Help
Reader Revenue Will Be Key to Long-Term Health of Local Publishers
Events Calendar
Guideline Changes Due to COVID-19

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Verified Would Like to Welcome...

Automotive Fleet
Automotive FleetBobit Business Media
Automotive Fleet is dedicated to meeting the needs of all fleets in all segments operating 15+ vehicles. Since 1961, Automotive Fleet has served the medium- to large-size fleet market. Editorial content covers the management of vehicles, fuel, remarketing, leasing and vehicle maintenance for fleets operating class 1–5 vehicles.

Style Weekly
Style WeeklyStyle Weekly, Inc.
Style Weekly is an alternative news magazine distributed throughout the metropolitan Richmond area at over 375 locations every Wednesday. Style Weekly is known for its smart, witty, tenacious coverage of Richmond, and its readers are fiercely local. Style has been Richmond's choice for more than 35 years as the definitive source of culture, arts, calendar information and creative thought.

Fleet EquipmentFleet Equipment
Babcox Business Media
As the only magazine dedicated to the specification, purchase and management of equipment assets, Fleet Equipment is the "must read" for trucking industry professionals.


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Mobile Web Traffic Up 30.6% Since 2017

Mobile Web Traffic Up 30.6% Since 2017
According to Similarweb's 2020 Digital Trends report, traffic to the top 100 websites globally reached 223 billion monthly visits in 2019. This is an 8.0% increase over 2018 and a nearly 12.0% increase over 2017.

Desktop traffic on the other hand, reduced by 3.3% during the same period.

"This growth is mostly fueled by mobile web, which saw traffic increase by an astounding 30.6% since 2017," said Similarweb's Liron Hakim Bobrov.


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Cosmic Irony: Big Chain-owned Newspapers
Aren't Getting Government Help

Cosmic Irony: Big Chain-owned Newspapers Aren't Getting Government HelpThe momentum in the newspaper industry is all towards consolidation, as chains merge into megachains.

But it's their very size that hurts them when seeking federal stimulus dollars.





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Reader Revenue Will Be Key to Long-Term
Health of Local Publishers

Cosmic Irony: Big Chain-owned Newspapers Aren't Getting Government HelpThe coronavirus pandemic has magnified the financial difficulties for many local publications, and it's not too early to consider their longer-term marketing strategies for when the health crisis subsides. Government bailouts can provide an emergency lifeline, but the industry will emerge much stronger by developing a mix of diverse sources of revenue.

Most immediately, the focus is on surviving long enough to participate in the recovery that will start as cities and states ease lockdowns on businesses that provide the financial lifeblood for local news outlets. Congress is said to be considering how to help local newspapers in its next COVID-19 relief package after many of them were excluded from past efforts, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The bailout funding has led to debate about whether media outlets can be expected to maintain their role as public watchdogs when they rely on government handouts to survive. That's an important question, but it's more likely that publishers will adapt their business models to be more self-sustaining, instead of hoping for grants from the government, wealthy benefactors or Silicon Valley giants like Google and Facebook.

Local newspapers most likely will need to redouble their efforts to generate reader revenue from digital paywalls and print subscriptions. The strategy will depend on providing exclusive content that national media outlets ignore in duplicating each other's efforts to cover spoon-fed events like White House press briefings.

It will also require publishers to undo reader expectations that online information is free, which mostly has been the case since the Internet was commercialized in 1994. Unfortunately, only a handful of publishers, such as The New York Times, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal have developed digital paywalls into a significant source of revenue.

However, a shift is occurring as media consumers are being trained to pay for content, Joe Hyrkin, CEO of digital publishing platform Issuu, recently told Publishing Insider in an exclusive interview. He likens the evolution to changes in consumption habits for music and video streaming, which mostly depend on subscription revenue.

"In the early days of the Internet, people thought they should get music for free, and we've essentially shifted that toward people understanding you had to pay for it," he said, citing file-sharing services like Napster, which music labels sued out of existence. "That facilitated the massive growth of independent creators that could start to get paid for their content."

A similar evolution is happening in quality video content, as people demonstrate a greater willingness to pay for streaming platforms like Netflix, Hulu and Disney+ that have exclusive programming. As recently as a few years ago, there was considerable debate about whether consumers would be willing to pay for video content while canceling pay-TV subscriptions.

"We're going to see the same thing around publisher content," Hyrkin said.

He's most optimistic about the possibilities to monetize local news and enthusiast content as the coronavirus pandemic keeps people confined to their homes and neighborhoods. Those consumers will cultivate hobbies and interests while also seeking information about what's happening in their communities, he said.

"Local publishing businesses are starting to realize the content still matters, but the ways in which we've distributed it and monetized it is going to evolve," he said. "In the same way that people have demonstrated a total acceptance of paying for music and video, we're going to start to see opportunities for clever businesses to leverage that around publishing, too."

© 2020 MediaPost Communications


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Events Calendar

National Newspaper Publishers Association 2020 Virtual Convention
July 8 – 9, 2020

Association of Alternative Newsweeklies
July 9 – 11, 2020
Boston, MA


If you have an event that you would like to announce,
please send your information to

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Guideline Changes Due to COVID-19

We are all seeing an immediate impact of the current health crisis on the publishing ecosystem – with further ramifications expected over the months to come. The slow and steady rise in confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) infections is agonizing, and it shows no sign of reversing yet.

Due to the difficulties this crisis is having on publishers, Verified has made changes to our guidelines to help alleviate the impact to our clients.

Omitted Issues
The limit of omitted issues allowed for a publication is being waived for the remainder of 2020. Publishers can omit issues at their own discretion and without approval from Verified. Omitted issues will not be included in the total qualified circulation in the Audit Report or Publisher's Statement.

Reporting and Materials Deadlines
The deadline for submitting audit materials has been extended. The Quarterly Printing and Distribution Reports (QPDs) due dates have been extended from April 15, 2020 to May 15, 2020. Please contact Verified to discuss any additional time needed for submission.

Disruption in Distribution
Verified will allow any changes to distribution, such as temporary suspension of delivery, due to this emergency. There will be no penalty for changes in distribution.

Waiving Recency of Renewal/Aging Table
Publishers may omit the Recency of Renewal/Aging table from the June 2020 audit. This isn't mandatory, but it will be available to publishers who request it.

Additionally, publishers may roll up the Recency of Renewals/Aging table to include a single category for the 1 – 3 year renewals instead of the 1-, 2- and 3-year breakout.

Suspension of Onsite Auditor Visits
Onsite Auditor Visits will be suspended until further notice. Verified will work with clients to complete your audit in a timely manner using other methods.

We understand that unforeseen questions and matters may arise as this situation continues to evolve. Please contact Verified's staff about any matters or concerns pertaining to your audit or report. Working together, we can find effective solutions during this difficult time.

For more information, call Verified at 415-461-6006.

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