Artikel - economy and ownership in the magazine industry

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Artikel - economy and ownership in the magazine industry

  1. 1. Stefanie van der FlierHow do economic forces affect ownership in the magazine industry?As said before the media industry is constantly changing. To understand the magazine industry a little better and determine how these changes evolve, it is useful to look at the economic dimension of the media industry. This article will have a focus on the ownership in the magazine industry, because owners of the media can influence the content and form of the product (Croteau & Hoynes 2003) and therefore it is interesting to examine who owns the media and what might influence that. According to Croteau & Hoynes (2003) “one of the clearest trends in media ownership is its increasing concentration into fewer hands”. In the magazine industry we see that in the year 2000 there were like three major publishers who tower above their competitors. These companies are: AOL Time Warner, Hearst Corporation and Advance Publication. A very useful website to get a look inside in the magazine industry of America is journalism.org. Every year they post a report: ‘The State of The News Media – an annual report on American Journalism’. This report describes how the media industry evolves each year and what is changed. When we take a look at the report on the magazine industry we can see that the three biggest magazines publishers mentioned in Croteau & Hoynes are being researched. On the website the claim has been made that the ownership of magazine publishers looks different from other media industries, because from the top 10 biggest magazine companies, only four are also in the 25 biggest media companies. This in contrary to the cable television companies were all ten largest companies are in the big 25 of media giants. This is partly due to the fact that the big magazine companies already exist for a long time and are well established, which makes it more difficult for other companies to compete. Another reason is that a big part of the revenues in the magazine industry come from niche markets (The State of The News Media – an annual report on American Journalism 2004).A lot of the big magazine companies are specialized in niche markets. It is very difficult for other companies to enter these markets, because they are already fulfilled by specialized publishers. For example the International Data Group, which is the sixth largest magazine company and specializes in computer magazines like PC World, Mac World and GamePro. Another example is Readers Digest, which is the fifth largest company publishes besides the famous Readers Digest also Family Handyman and American Woodworker (The State of The News Media – an annual report on American Journalism 2004).From what is stated before we can see that the way the market looks is a critical for the shape of the ownership landscape. The ownership in the magazine industry looks different from the other media industries partly because the economy needs it to be. <br />Sources- Project for Excellence in Journalism (2004) The State of The News Media 2004 – an annual report on American journalism http://www.stateofthemedia.org/2004/narrative_magazines_intro.asp?cat=1&media=7 - Project for Excellence in Journalism (2009) The State of The News Media 2009 – an annual report on American journalism http://www.stateofthemedia.org/2009/narrative_magazines_intro.php?media=9&cat=0- Croteau, D. & Hoynes, W. (2003) Media Society, industires, images and audiences. California: Sage Publications<br />

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