Monday, July 21, 2008

Utusan insists on staying broadsheet

After Berita Harian/Berita Minggu ditched their broadsheet size, the only mainstream newspaper that is holding on to that tradition is the Utusan Malaysia/Mingguan Malaysia. From what I hear, the Utusan group is happy to continue with its present format.

There are advantages. The group already have its tabloid newspaper, Kosmo!, which has a claimed circulation of about 130,000. If the main paper goes tabloid, it will compete with Kosmo!, and that is not a good strategy, some friends say.

Berita Harian's tabloid version hasn't really excited many readers. It's basically cosmetic changes. The contents are the same, basically very much a pro-establishment (and pro-PM) paper. Nothing really exceptional.

The Utusan chaps said they are the only newspaper which can offer big across-the-gutter advertisements broadsheet size. This can come in handy on special occassions. They said they are happy with the present format and will make sure it stays that way.

The Utusan chaps believe that there has been no real increase in circulation for the NSTP newspapers which are all tabloids now. Quoting AC Nielsen, they said the circulation figures have been stagnant.

In fact, they said the new Malay Mail has also seen a drop in sales, hovering not much more than 20k copies. Ibrahim Nor has to find new ways to check the decline.

But no one can guarantee this. The Utusan Chief editor Khalid Mohd will leave soon, as do its chairman, Hashim Makaruddin. The new bosses have not been publicly named, and they may have other ideas. We just have to wait.


Anonymous said...

Bernama - Tuesday, July 22KUALA LUMPUR, July 21 (Bernama) -- Berjaya Media Bhd has appointed prominent media figure Datuk Azman Ujang as an independent and non-executive director.


In a filing to Bursa Malaysia, Berjaya Media said Azman, 57, has been also appointed as member of the audit committee of the company.

He is also currently the Chairman of the Malaysian Press Institute.

Azman recently retired as the general manager of Bernama after having served the national news agency for almost 36 years.

At Bernama, he rose through the ranks, starting as a cadet reporter in 1971, followed by promotion to various editorial positions.

In 2004, he was appointed Editor-in-Chief and in March 2007, he was made General Manager of Bernama.

During his tenure with Bernama, Azman had extensively covered the foreign visits of Malaysian dignitaries.

He is regularly invited by both public and private sector organisations and universities to lecture on the media industry, as well as host talk shows over local television. -- BERNAMA


solidleong said...

Does it matter....I dun buy newspaper nowadays.Anyway they are not independent n free, agreed?

shastrishah said...

Tuan Solidleong,

Newspapers need not be independent. Even if they are owned by wealthy individuals, they may not be independent. But newspapers should be professionally-run. The reporting must be impartial and balanced. It's the same all over the world. In UK, there are newspapers supporting political parties but their reports are more balanced and professional. The newspaper owners are not afraid to criticise the parties they support because to do otherwise would mean lost in credibility. TKS

shastrishah said...


All the best to AU.

solidleong said...


Thanks for the explanation. Do appreciate your contributions.

rizal hashim said...

Picture this scenario...

A member of the Utusan editorial management staff was hospitalised after a mild heart attack.

The next day, the Utusan chairman Hashim Makaruddin paid the staff a visit.

Does this happen in the other groups?

Just a question