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Media landscape Two-thirds of Swiss readers prefer print newspaper

A picture of a young man reading a newspaper

The pleasure of getting ink on your hands - most Swiss readers still prefer to read their paper the old-fashioned way. 

(Keystone)

Despite the rise in online media, ink-on-paper newspapers remain a favourite in Switzerland, a new survey has found.

The study conducted by Wemfexternal link, published on Tuesday, has analysed Swiss news reading behaviour over the last six months and found that despite the decline of print media in recent years, Swiss readers continue to leaf through physical newspapers more often than they read stories on the corresponding online news portals.

Whilst many newspapers have lost readers over the last few years, of those who do continue to read newspapers regularly, two thirds prefer to read the print rather than online version of their chosen newspaper. Only two Swiss newspapers, the French-speaking economics bulletin Bilanzexternal link and the German-speaking tabloid Blickexternal link, had more online users than print readers.

+ Youth shun traditional news sources

Some regional newspaper even gained print readers last year, according to the survey. The Luzerner Zeitung, a local newspaper in central Switzerland, gained 5,000 readers last year for example, and now has 292,000 daily print readers.

Despite the print newspapers’ continued popularity compared to their online versions, long-established Swiss newspapers such the German-speaking TagesAnzeigerexternal link and the Neue Zürcher Zeitung external linkonce again lost more print readers last year; 37,000 and 13,000 print readers respectively.

Striking a balance

These losses were partly compensated by an increase in online news traffic, however. The Neue Züricher Zeitung and the French-speaking Tribune de Genèveexternal link were able to maintain readership numbers by gaining readers online.

The free daily newspaper 20 minutes which is distributed across all linguistic regions of the country also gained readers online and remains Switzerland’s most widely read newspaper with a readership of 1.9 million print and 1.3 million online.

World-wide, print media is far from dead. A 2014 report by the World Association of Newspapers and News Publishersexternal link, found that 49% of the world’s adult population still read printed newspaper.

SRF-RTS/SDA-ATS/ln

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