We’re going to focus on the positive. The Audit Bureau of Circulation released their numbers yesterday for the first half of 2008 and In Style and People are doing fine (though the Brangelina cover may not be as big as they’d hoped numberswise, if numbers were actually what they were aiming for), both posted gains in their newsstand sales.
Everyone else has pretty much had a crappy year so far to put it bluntly, with overall magazine sales dropping 6.3% in the first half of 2008. This includes O, The Oprah Magazine, US Weekly, Cosmopolitan, and the newly shrunk Rolling Stone. Portfolio points out that while newsstand sales are down, subscription sales have remained even (unless you count Game Informer, which is through the roof!) while industry-wide, “verified” subscriptions (meaning “public-place copies, or those given away by a third-party partner”) are up 15.8%. The Times says it’s just a result of a bad economy, and that people are merely shopping “very cautiously and less frequently.” Which seems like a solid rationale when it comes to the auto industry but not so much when we’re talking four dollar, reality diverting purchases. Though speaking of the auto-industry, they are apparently at least somewhat to blame for all these diminished ad pages…everything comes back to oil in the end, doesn’t it.