You’re not the only one reading the newspaper, according to data compiled by the Newspaper Association of America.
U.S. newspapers’ revenue declined by 2 percent in 2012 — the smallest decline in the past six years. In 2012, the industry made $38.6 billion, compared with $39.5 billion in 2011.
For the first time, the report took into consideration newspapers’ changing revenue strategies, focusing on readership, digital news and newer revenue sources.
Mike Foley, a professor in the UF College of Journalism and Communications, said newspapers have struggled with losing readership to online news sources and classifieds to websites like Craigslist.
“It continues to be a sad state of affairs when it’s a cause for excitement when the decline is less than it has been,” he said.
However, profits from circulation grew by 5 percent in 2012, the first increase in the category since 2003.
Jennifer Ortiz, a 21-year-old UF English junior, said she thinks the increase may be because there’s a lot happening in the world right now.
She said newspapers are more focused than online news sources.
“It’s all framed, so you see the more important things first,” she said. “On the Internet, I have a much shorter attention span.”
Although newspapers are adapting to the digital world, Foley said, the industry made a mistake when it didn’t take action when the Internet first gained popularity.
“They should have realized they were in the information business, not the newspaper business,” he said. “It’s hard to make people pay for something they got for free for so long.”
The Newspaper Association of America included new income sources in a report about 2012 revenue. Factors like digital and event marketing constituted 16 percent of 2012’s total revenue.