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ABC figures to be compiled for online editions

Publishers will soon be able to report their digital editions on ABC print certificates under new rules agreed by the ABC Council.

The rules, which come into effect from July, mean that the digital editions can be reported on the print certificate – but separately from – the headline ABC figure.

And while digital editions can now be reported on the print certificate, they cannot be included within the Average Net Circulation Figure. They will be reported separately, in line with most other ABC’s around the world.

The Newspaper Society, which acts for regional newspapers, has classed digital editions as electronic replicas of the parent newspaper as opposed to newspaper websites.

ABC chief executive Chris Boyd said: “The rules governing digital editions have been agreed following consensus reached by the Cross Sector Digital Rules Working Group.

“This group was formed following an extensive review by senior buyers and sellers into the reporting of digital editions.

“So the process over the past 12 months or so, has been very thorough and has involved representatives from throughout the media industry.

“By introducing these rules, publishers can ensure that they are providing advertisers and media buyers with data on both their print and digital editions’ circulation that is both totally transparent and comparable.”

The working group was formed following the ABC Council decision in December 2003 to allow digital editions to be reported alongside the print edition. It consisted of leading advertising buyers and publishing representatives from the following ABC Specialist Committees of national newspapers, regional newspapers, consumer magazines and business-to-business magazines.

The Association of Online Publishers was also represented in the formation of the rules.

Newspaper Society regional press representatives on ABC Council are: Carolyn Mackinnon-Ure (Northcliffe Newspapers), Paul Hodgson (Trinity Mirror), Steve Lowe (Newsquest Sussex), Roger Sparrow (Regional Letterbox Services) and Lynne Anderson (Newspaper Society).

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