Where People Do And Don’t Read Newspapers

AdAge highlights the results of a survey that set out to find those parts of the country where newspaper readership was highest and lowest, and the results were interesting:

The percentage of daily print newspaper readers in the U.S. has fallen nearly 20% since 2001, according to research firm Scarborough. But that drop has not been spread evenly, with print readership remaining strong in some metropolitan areas.

In several cities rimming the Great Lakes and Northeast, the percentage of adults who claim to read a print newspaper daily hovered around 50% in 2012, compared with 35.7% nationwide, Scarborough found. The number is as low as 23% in locales across the South and Southwest.

Among the cities with the highest readership are Pittsburgh at No. 1, followed by Albany and Hartford/New Haven, Cleveland, and then a four way tie for fourth place that includes Buffalo, Honolulu, New York City, and Toledo. On the lowest readership list are Atlanta, Houston, San Antonio, Las Vegas, and Bakersfield, CA. What’s unclear is whether the survey defined “reading” a newspaper as actually reading a physical paper, or also included reading one online. Obviously, that would have an impact on the results of the survey.

FILED UNDER: Economics and Business, Media, Quick Takes
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020.

Comments

  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    The percentage of daily print newspaper readers in the U.S. has fallen nearly 20% since 2001, according to research firm Scarborough. But that drop has not been spread evenly, with print readership remaining strong in some metropolitan areas.

    Not a 100% sure, but the implication is strong.

  2. Dave Schuler says:

    They should also control for state capitals.

  3. Franklin says:

    For some reason, Toledo strikes me as the answer to: which one is not like the rest? No offense to the Blade or anything.

  4. bk says:

    One possible reason for Las Vegas ranking near the bottom is that the daily newspaper is not fit for wrapping even the most rancid of fish.

  5. Pinky says:

    @Franklin: Toledo’s a lot like Buffalo, Cleveland, and Pittsburgh. Their populations are mostly native-born, for one thing. I bet that readership declines the more often you move – both due to the lack of community roots and the greater likelihood of being an educated, digital person.