Private Frazer was away last week on the sun-drenched beaches of North Uist so has only just got round to looking at the ABC release of the July-December circulation figures.
Appropriately for a report that came out on February 14th, publishers have suffered an absolute massacre. What to pick out from the jewels at the bottom of the vat of red ink?
One could point at Reader’s Digest which saw 138,000 copies fall away over the year (that’s over a third of its 2011 circulation); or Bauer, whose easy-going owners are no doubt blase about losses of 15%, 20% and 40% respectively for Closer, Heat and More.
Hearst’s printers too will have more capacity on their presses as Cosmo drops 69,000 copies, Reveal sheds 67,000, Company loses 59,000 and Best takes a 40,000 circulation bath.
Or should we laud Immediate, who have managed to take massive hits on four of their biggest brands – Good Food, Top Gear, Gardeners World and Radio Times are all over 30,000 copies down.
No, this time the prize has to go to Northern and Shell with three stellar performances: over 107,000 lost from each of Star and New!, and a 46,000 drop for OK! A quarter of a million copies an issue gone, like the memories of better days.