ACM, Nine and West Australian papers ditch public AMAA auditing

Over a year after News Corp left the Audited Media Association of Australia (AMAA)’s public auditing system Nine, Australian Community Media (ACM) metro and West Australian Newspapers have all followed suit, moving to private auditing with the association.

The decision comes due to the “changing landscape” of the media industry, according to the AMAA, and a focus on multi-platform audience measurement.

The future of the AMAA public auditing looks rocky as all major print publishers leave the process

Readership measure Enhanced Media Metrics Australia (EMMA) will continue to release the readership figures, not circulation figures, for News Corp Australia’s print titles, as well as Nine, ACM metro and West Australian Newspapers. EMMA was launched by the newspaper industry five years ago as an alternative readership metric to Roy Morgan. 

AMAA, which has provided print title audits since 1932, has confirmed all titles will continue private auditing under the existing ABC and CAB audit frameworks. 

CEO of AMAA, Josanne Ryan, said the body recognises the need for publishers to provide a cross-platform view of readership.

“The AMAA is evolving its services to support the changing media reporting landscape where audience metrics are the primary metric,” Ryan said.

“The AMAA continues to advance how it works with publishers, large and small, to support them with audited metrics that work for their business and we will continue to work closely with our industry partners.”

Despite the change, Ryan said publishers still recognised the importance of independent metrics and transparency for marketers.

AMAA will still represent some regional and country titles, selected overseas newspapers, indigenous and community language publications and magazines.

However, the departure of the three remaining biggest print producers in the country deals a potentially fatal blow to the public auditing process, mirroring the sequence of events which occurred in magazine auditing.

In 2016, Bauer pulled its magazine titles from the AMAA public audits, followed shortly by News Corp’s NewsLifeMedia magazine arm and Pacific Magazines. Just six months later, a majority of the remaining independent magazine titles also left the process, citing the fact there was ‘nobody else left’ as their reason.

While the print magazine exodus has occurred over a longer timeframe, it’s hard to see how the public newspaper audit process can continue without the majority of Australia’s print titles involved. The last circulation reports from the AMAA showed print circulations dropping across most publishers.


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