Here is the latest thread on this, which I posted today.
This is important in that Wall Street is now monitoring these liars, not just Media Watch and Free Republic.
Merrill Lynch Fears More Circ Flaps; Advertising Fallout (La Slimes fall out)
Editor and Publisher.com ^ | June 21, 2004 12:20 PM EST | Jennifer Saba
Posted on 06/23/2004 9:09:53 AM PDT by Grampa Dave
Merrill Lynch Fears More Circ Flaps; Advertising Fallout
By Jennifer Saba
Published: NEW YORK Troubled by last week's circulation scandals at Hollinger International's Chicago Sun-Times and the Tribune Co.'s Newsday and Hoy, Merrill Lynch's Lauren Rich Fine released a report today calling into question the reliability of circulation figures for the entire industry. "Our biggest fear," the report said, "is that these two announcements may not be isolated incidents."
The worst consequence could be declining ad revenue, if advertisers doubt the reliability of circulation figures. The report says that the most vulnerable spot will be preprint inserts as they are purchased entirely on circ reach. It added: "Circulation is likely to remain a controversial topic in the near term."
The report also takes to task the Audit Bureau of Circulations, saying that the overstatement of circ figures seems to "suggest that there may be loopholes in the ABC audit system" and "at the very minimum, it suggests that ABC's audits need to be completed much sooner." Many newspapers use the ABC publisher's statements to sell advertising because there is a lag in the ABC audited reports. All newspapers are audited once a year. Those with a circ under 25,000 have the option of going through an audit every two years.
Also Fine points to the Rosie magazine circulation flap and the ripples it sent through that industry: "It appears that concerns about inaccuracies in the magazine circulation statements, a fallout from the Rosie magazine trial, have had more impact on magazine advertising in the last year than we thought. We hope the same will not happen to the newspaper industry."