As per Indian Readership Survey (IRS) 2010 Q1, most dailies in Tamil Nadu have lost readers. The only ones to have gained are Tamil daily, Dinakaran, and three English dailies -- The Hindu, The Times of India (TOI) and The New Indian Express.
Daily Thanthi continues to be the No. 1 daily in the state, with a total readership of 2 crore. The newspaper has maintained status quo -- it has lost 9,000 readers, which is negligible -- in this round. However, the Tamil daily had lost 1.64 lakh readers in the previous round (R2, 2009).
In Chennai, Daily Thanthi has recorded a total readership of 25.04 lakh as per Q1, 2010 -- a loss of 86,000 readers. However, the newspaper had also lost 53,000 readers in the previous round; this means that its total readership in Chennai has decreased by 5.5 per cent (1.39 lakh) in a year's time.
Dinamalar is the No. 3 daily in the state, with a total readership of 94.26 lakh. The Tamil daily has lost 1.87 lakh readers in the current round of IRS. In fact, in the last two rounds put together, it has lost more than 5 lakh readers. In Chennai, where the Tamil daily is behind The Hindu at No. 4, it has lost more than one lakh readers in the last one year, and now claims a total readership of 7.2 lakh.
The Hindu comes in at No. 5, with a total readership of 26.54 lakh. Despite competition, the newspaper has added around 17,000 readers in Q1, 2010. However, in the previous round (R2, 2009), the newspaper had lost around 1.29 lakh readers. In Chennai, where The Hindu is ranked No. 3, it has lost around 9,000 readers, which is marginal. The newspaper has lost 78,000 readers in the last two rounds.
At No. 6 in Tamil Nadu is Tamil daily, Dinamani, with a total readership of 21.45 lakh -- a loss of 60,000 readers in Q1, 2010. The newspaper has lost 2.36 lakh readers in the last one year. In Chennai, the daily's total readership stands at 1.27 lakh -- a loss of 31,000 readers.
Tamizh Murasu, at No. 7 in Tamil Nadu, has a total readership of 11.54 lakh. It has also lost 51,000 readers.
The next three positions in Tamil Nadu are held by three English dailies -- Deccan Chronicle, The New Indian Express and TOI, respectively.
Deccan Chronicle, at No. 8, has a total readership of 9.38 lakh, and has lost 71,000 readers in the state. In Chennai, which contributes to 50 per cent of its total readership, it is ranked No. 5. Here, it has lost 52,000 readers in the current round, taking its total readership to 4.75 lakh.
Next is The New Indian Express, with a total readership of 5.32 lakh. This English daily has also maintained status quo, as it has added only 6,000 readers in the current round. However, the newspaper had lost 79,000 readers in the previous round. Unlike in the case of Deccan Chronicle, Chennai is a very insignificant market for The New Indian Express, as it has a readership of only 51,000 in the city. The newspaper's readership in the city has come down by 50 per cent in the last one year.
The Times of India is placed as No. 10 in Tamil Nadu, within two years of entering the state. The country's largest English daily has gained 18,000 readers in the state, taking its total readership to 3.84 lakh. About 82 per cent of TOI's readers come from Chennai, where it holds the No. 6 position overall and the No. 3 position amongst English dailies. Here, the newspaper has added 13,000 readers in the current round.