IRS 2008 R2: Times of India leads, despite loss in total readership

By Dhaleta Surender Kumar , afaqs!, New Delhi | In Media Publishing | November 05, 2008
While Hindustan Times has retained the No. 2 position without adding many new readers, The Times of India has lost three lakh readers

The & #BANNER1 & # Indian Readership Survey (IRS) 2008 Round 2 (R2), which was announced yesterday doesn't indicate a positive indication for the English dailies.

Surprisingly, none of the dailies amongst top 10 have seen an increase in readership. Although, quite a few publications have managed to retain their readers as compared to the previous round of IRS, but majority of them have seen a decline in readership.

The Times of India (TOI) continues to be the top English daily in the country with a total readership of 1.33 crore, which is 3 lakh less than the previous round's figure of 1.36 crore. TOI's maximum loss has been in Maharashtra, and Delhi and its urban environ, while it has gained in markets such as West Bengal and Rajasthan. In the last one year, TOI has launched editions in Goa and Chennai, but that doesn't reflect separately in this round.

Its foe turned friend Hindustan Times continues to be the second most English daily in the country with a total readership of 63 lakh. Interestingly, Hindustan Times is one of the few players in the top 10 that has managed to retain its readership.

At No. 3, The Hindu has lost around 4 lakh readers since Round 1, down to 52 lakh readers in Round 2. It should be noted that TOI Chennai edition has not been reported separately, which might again change the dynamics of the market.

The Telegraph is at No. 4, which is a gain of one position compared to the previous round, but a loss of one lakh readers. It is down from 30 lakh readers in R1 to 29 lakh readers in R2.

Interestingly, The Hindu's arch rival, Deccan Chronicle has also registered a decline in readership. The newspaper has also been pushed down one position by The Telegraph to No. 5. Deccan Chronicle has seen a decline in total readership of 2 lakh.

The Economic Times (ET), which is next at No. 6, has also climbed up one position, pushing The New Indian Express, to No. 7. ET is one of the few publications to maintain a status quo on the readership as compared to last round. Its total readership is 20 lakh.

Meanwhile, The New Indian Express, has lost 2 lakh readers, with a total readership of 18 lakh in the current round.

Both Mumbai Mirror and Mid-Day share the eighth position with 16 lakh readers each. While, Mumbai Mirror has lost 2 lakh readers, Mumbai Mirror managed to retain its readership as compared to the previous round.

Meanwhile, DNA is perched steadily at No. 10, with 13 lakh readers in both the rounds.