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Global: The Economist ad revenue declines

Declining ad revenues suffered by other news companies has finally caught up with the British publication, The Economist, reporting an 11 per cent decrease in profits.

The Economist has experienced a “painful” year, according to chairman Rupert Pennant-Rae, with its annual report revealing a decrease in advertising sales, compared to previous years.

Advertising contributed to less than 20 per cent of The Economist’s sales, with 23 per cent in 2015 and 40 per cent in 2010.

Despite its tough year, for the first time, magazine sales were the largest contributors to profits while subscriptions also increased.

To avoid future losses, its marketing budget will be increased over the next few years.

News UK extends print and digital offerings

News Corp UK has revamped the Sunday Times Style magazine and The Sun on Sunday’s Fabulous as daily publications with more online content, further investing in print and digital offerings.

Style will be taking on a “digital first” approach, focusing on video content on “Style Play” in an attempt “to listen to the market and continue to innovate around the core brand proposition,” according to Style editor-in-chief Lorraine Candy.

Fabulous, on the other hand, will get a daily section in the newspaper, encouraging readers to “Be Fabulous Every Day.” It will also appear on a new area of TheSun.co.uk, centralising on “aspirational and inspirational,” brand safe content aimed at women.

According to Candy, the realignment to a seven-day offering aims to provide opportunities for readers to interact with their content and for advertisers to engage with them.

Social media ‘highly trusted’ for news in Middle East

Social media is the main source of news for Arab nationals, according to the Media Use in the Middle East survey, conducted by Northwestern University in Qatar.

The survey aims to chart people’s media use and public opinion, involving more than 7000 subjects in the United Arab Emirates, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Qatar, Tunisia, and Egypt.

The study of the Middle East, found that two-thirds of respondents say they get their news from social media daily and more than three-quarters of respondents get their news on their phones, second to television.

Arab nationals highly trust mass media, consistent across ages and education levels. Compared to Americans, they are twice as likely to trust mass media.

The study encourages discussion and debate surrounding the often taboo topics of censorship and free speech.

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