Google closes ‘News’ in Spain, not all publishers agree

January 2nd, 2015

Free daily 20 minutos is no fan of Google News leaving Spain. This as a result of the ‘link tax’ that charges website for external links… actually a law specifically aimed at Google, and something publishers in other countries want to copy.

This message of editor in chief Arsenio Escolar appears on the 20 Minutos website.

Screen Shot 2015-01-02 at 22.45.23

Actually, it’s the Google Translate version (is that legal in Spain?), I know Arsenio and he speaks much better english than that. This is the original version.

Screen Shot 2015-01-02 at 23.26.28

No. 1 in a 67-part series: Albania

January 2nd, 2015

agon2013In a few weeks we will see the 2oth birthday of the first ‘modern’ free daily in the world. Metro Stockholm launched on February 13 1995.

On this blog – updated not quite as often as it used to be – we will cover the development of this rather recent media model worldwide.

On February 13 we will covefr Sweden, and in the coming weeks al other European countries with free dailies. After that we will do the rest of the world.

Starting with Europe, and with A.

Albinia. A country with lots of newspapers (you cannnot start a political party without one).

One paper so far discovered in Albania: Agon, according to Wikipedia launched in 2007, last issue online from August 2013. The website was unavailable in 2014. The circulation is unknown.

One paper so far discovered in Albania: Agon, according to Wikipedia launched in 2007, last issue online from August 2013.
Website in 2014 unavailable.
Circulation onknown

European free dailies: circulation down with 50% since 2007

January 1st, 2015

Since 2007, circulation, the number of countries and the number of titles of free dailies has dropped in Europe.

In 2013 there are 65 free dailies in 23 countries with an estimated circulation of 14 million.

At it’s peak in 2007 these numbers were: 140 papers in 31 countries with a circulation of 27 million.


Metro Herald (Ireland) stops publishing

December 17th, 2014

MetroHerald2009The free newspaper Metro Herald will publish its last edition on Friday 19 November. According tot the publisher, because of an “unsustainable business model”,  13 people will lose their job.

Metro Herald is published Furtune Gree, owned by The Irish Times, The Daily Mail and Independent News & Media (INM). (Irish Times)

The title started in 2010 as a result of the merger of Metro and Herald AM, both free dailies were launched in 2005.

Total circulation was somewhat under 60,000 copies.

Knesset passes anti “Israel Hayom” bill

November 24th, 2014

Israel Today 2012The Israeli parliament has aproved the first reading of a bill that proposes to make the free distribution of newspapers illegal.

The bill is clearly targeted at free newspaper Israel Yahom (Israel Today) as it stipulates that it only concerns newspapers that are distributed 6 days a week and have at least 30 pages on weekdays and 100 pages in its weekend edition. The only free competitor, Israel Post, is published 5 days a week and is also much thinner.

Israel Yahom, financed by “the richest jew in the world”, US-casino bilionaire Sheldon Adelson, is a strong supporter of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who called the bill a disgrace.

The bill is meant to protect paid newspapers agains Israel Hayom, by far the best-read paper in the country.

Globes, the business paper that reported on the bill, however, does not expect the bill to be apporved in parliament.

Österreich wants to cover all of Vienna

October 1st, 2014

gross_mon-don_webFree Austrian newspare Österreich will start to distribute next week to all Vienna households. The paper wants to target people who avoid advertising.

The action will take place on three days: Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Household distribution will amount to motre than one million copies. Another 600.000 copies will be distributed in th etraditional way. (Die Presse)

1.5 million visitors for Metro UK website

August 25th, 2014

Metro was the fastest growing UK newspaper website in July 2014, more than 1.5 daily browsers visited the website according to ABC.

The website is produced by the Mail Online and is operated separate from the print edition.

Screen Shot 2014-08-25 at 09.00.31

Metro was the 7th most popular newspaper website, Mail Online (11 million daily browsers), and The Guardian (6 million) lead.  (Press Gazette)

Metro US acquires Philadelphia City Paper

August 15th, 2014

Screen Shot 2014-08-15 at 14.59.10Metro US, operating three editions in the USA: Philadelphia, New York and Boston, has bought the alternative free weekly Philadelphia City Paper from its owner, the Rock family.

The Philadelphia City Paper was founded 32 years ago, Metro Philadelphia started in 2000 as the first US edition. It is no longer aprt of the Metro International group but operated as a franchise.

The City Paper will continue as a separate editorial operation.

The two publications jointly reach over 840,000 Philadelphians every week and deliver to the most attractive and vibrant audience in Philadelphia. (Businesswire)

Second Kenya free daily within 6 months

July 29th, 2014

people-daily_2014A few months after the launch of XNEWS, the first Kenyan free daily (see previous post), a second free newspaper entered the scene: People Daily.

This paper was formerly the paid The People newspaper while claims to be the first ‘national’ free daily – as XNEWS is only distributed in Nairobi.

The paper is published by Mediamax Network Ltd. (founded in 2009), a media firm active in radio and TV.

Mediamax is a media company associated with President Uhuru Kenyatta according to allAfrica. This website quotes Aly-Khan Satchu, chief executive officer of Nairobi-based Rich Management Ltd.:

“The owners have deep pockets and possess political raison d’etre, and most probably the goal is to give the allies of the president a platform that can reach the masses”

People Daily wants to compete the Daily Nation (circulation around 170,000) and The Standard (48,000), it claims to distribute 110,000 copies.

Free daily newspapers have been scarce in sub-Sahara Africa, only South-Africa had some titles a few years ago. Also a government-owned free daily is published in Botswana. Free weeklies are more common.

Bill McDonald leaves Metro Canada

July 28th, 2014

Screen Shot 2014-07-28 at 13.40.11As parent company Torstar Corp. is integrating free Metro with its other print operations of the Star Media Group, president and publisher Bill McDonald will leave the company.

McDonald held the position since 2010, he started in 2006 at Metro.

These things are always a little bittersweet,I look back fondly on the last eight plus years” he told the Globe and Mail.