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News Corp.'s 'The Daily' Struggling to Get Readers

Numbers reveal tablet paper well below profitability
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What do newspapers the Toledo Blade, the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, and Rupert Murdoch’s tablet paper The Daily all have in common? Each one has a weekly circulation of about 120,000.

Of course, that doesn’t mean that all of The Daily’s 120,000 weekly readers are actually paying for the privilege. “They won’t tell us how many paying subscribers, but that’s how many uniques The Daily is getting,” Zenith Optimedia evp John Nitti (who works with Verizon Wireless, a sponsor of The Daily) told Bloomberg News.

Included in those 120,000 unique visitors are both paid subscribers and people who get The Daily for free. (The e-newspaper offers a complimentary two-week trial before subscribers must choose to pay 99 cents per week or $39.99 a year for the content.)

Nitti said that 120,000 weekly subscribers is a “respectable” number, but it’s still nowhere near where The Daily needs to be in order to make money. According to Rupert Murdoch, the publication needs 500,000 weekly subscribers to become profitable, meaning it’s only about a quarter of the way there.