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AAM Board Agrees to U.S. Magazine Allowance for Lost Scan Sales, Requires Large Magazines to Report More Frequent Per-Issue Data

Elects New Directors

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill., Nov. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The board of the Alliance for Audited Media (formerly the Audit Bureau of Circulations) has agreed to create an allowance for U.S. magazine newsstand sales that are lost when not properly scanned or accounted for by retail outlets. The board will determine the final allowance percentage at its March meeting, following further industry discussion. If given final approval, the new U.S. rules would take effect with 2013 first-half magazine publisher's statements.

The AAM board also agreed to require U.S. magazines with circulations over 250,000 to report more frequent per-issue data via AAM's Rapid Report tool, beginning with July 2013 issues. Participation in Rapid Report has been optional since its inception in 2006. The board also agreed to modify the U.S. rule for credit cancellations to allow these copies to be counted as "verified" circulation.

In other magazine actions, the AAM board endorsed new U.S. and Canadian guidelines for publications that convert from print to digital-only distribution models. The guidelines specify that subscribers must be told about options that should include receiving the digital subscription, converting to another print publication, or receiving a refund for the remainder of the subscription.

The board of directors also reviewed an update on AAM's work with Next Issue Media, as the media auditor continues its work with publishers to test and navigate new digital programs. AAM is extending its test period with Next Issue Media, which offers unlimited access to digital magazines for a fixed price. Upon completion of the AAM review in the first quarter of 2013, the board will review a recommendation for development of qualification and reporting standards for unlimited access programs such as these.

"We are making important progress on a number of critical issues that will help to continue moving magazine publishing and advertising forward," said David Leckey, executive vice president of consumer marketing at American Media Inc. and chairman of the AAM board's magazine committee. "It's vital that AAM continues adapting to today's changing cross-media environment. As a board we are committed to working with publishers, advertisers, and their agencies to ensure that AAM provides the media industry with the accountability and confidence for which it is so well known."

Key Newspaper Actions

A joint publisher/buyer Consolidated Media Report task force continues to develop recommendations for newspaper reporting standards and formats, database integration of new metrics, and frequency of reporting. A main focus for the group is more frequent data reported via an integrated online database. Testing of this will begin in early 2013.

Following its acquisition of the Certified Audit of Circulations this month, the AAM board reviewed plans for the integration of AAM and CAC data. This multiphase data integration project is slated for completion in the summer of 2014 and includes overhauling CAC's website, housing current and historical CAC reports, and integrating CAC data into AAM's database, the Media Intelligence Center.

Board of Director and Officer Elections

At the divisional meetings held last week, AAM members re-elected 14 directors to serve new terms on the board. They also elected three new representatives:

  • Sue Roberson, Time Inc., representing U.S. magazines
  • Lou Cona, Conde Nast, representing U.S. magazines
  • Alisa Bowen, Dow Jones, representing U.S. newspapers

The board also elected as chairman Sunni Boot of ZenithOptimedia Canada Inc. AAM elected as vice chairmen:  Rob Fisher, American City Business Journals; Scott Heekin-Canedy, The New York Times; Scott Kruse, GroupM; David W. Leckey, American Media Inc.; Christina Meringolo, Merck Consumer Care; and Shelagh Stoneham, Rogers Communications Inc.

The AAM board of directors meeting was held Nov. 14-16 in New York, in conjunction with AAM's annual conference. For a complete summary of board actions, visit AAM's website. For a recap of the AAM annual conference, including keynotes, panel sessions and photos, please visit our conference website.

About the Alliance for Audited Media

The Alliance for Audited Media (AAM) is a nonprofit organization that connects North America's leading media companies, advertisers and ad agencies. Founded in 1914 as the Audit Bureau of Circulations, the AAM is the preeminent source of cross-media verification and information services, providing standards, audit services and data critical to the advertising industry. The organization independently verifies print and digital circulation, mobile apps, website analytics, social media, technology platforms and audience information for newspapers, magazines and digital media companies in the U.S. and Canada. In November 2012, the AAM joined forces with Certified Audit of Circulations. To learn more about the Alliance for Audited Media, visit the AAM website.

SOURCE Alliance for Audited Media

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