Traditional Media has 5 years left: PWC Analyst

PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PWC) Analyst Marcel Fenez has told the World Association of Newspapers readership conference that traditional media has 5 years left until the death clock kicks in.

Fenez argues that globally print media has growth opportunities, and expects advertising revenue to grow in the short term, driven by emerging markets.

But it’s these quotes (via The PressGazette) which are telling:

“One of the things we need to get into context here is that traditional media isn’t dead yet and won’t be for the next five years.”

“It’s very important to think why. The over-50s are helping to sustain traditional media, and also in many of the emerging markets there is still plenty of room for traditional media. The death of traditional media is exaggerated, at least in a five-year context.”

The inclusion of the growing age divide in readership is notable: here’s an analyst arguing for short term growth in the industry, but only with the proviso that those consuming traditional media are graying.

The context of the global vs American figures isn’t new; although we’ve covered the decline in the newspaper industry in the United States (and by extension, Western countries), globally newspapers are still growing. The World Association of Newspapers reported in February 2007 that circulation of newspapers worldwide was increasing; the factors at play driving the death of newspapers in Western countries aren’t in play to the same extent through out the rest of the world. Not everyone has internet access…or even power for that matter. Countries such as China have an emerging middle class, the traditional buyers of newspapers, and as other countries see improved literacy rates, people turn to what they can get, and despite the superiority of the internet as a delivery mechanism in the west, newsprint is often all they have access to.

This picture though doesn’t change the death spiral in countries such as the United States. It just shows that the death of traditional media will come at different rates in different countries, respective of their connectivity to the internet. The pessimist in me will note that in some countries, print will never be replaced because they’ll never get widespread access to the internet..well at least for a long time to come.

(via PaidContent, Img Credit: Free Republic)

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