Recent reading – an exercise in double counting?

Newspaper and magazine ‘Average Issue Readership’ (AIR) measurements in Great Britain have continuously used the ‘Recent Reading’ technique for some fifty years or more. A likely explanation for such a remarkably long and infrequently questioned sequence is partly due to the fact that Great Britain has always had a very large number of national newspapers and consumer magazines requiring measurement. Thus, for a joint newspaper and magazine survey, ‘Through-the-Book’ measures have always been considered impractical in terms of sample size and cost. Additionally, not all users have understood the definition of ‘Readership’; and users are anyway generally resistant to change in the ‘trading currency’.

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