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Culture & The Media

Newspapers and magazines

Thanks to their digital editions, newspapers are seeing ever greater circulation, although the number of printed copies sold continues to fall.
© contrastwerkstatt/

The many different media voices include around 330 daily newspapers, mainly distributed regionally, 17 weeklies, and 1,600 mass-market magazines. After China, India, Japan, and the USA, Germany is the fifth-largest newspaper market worldwide. Per publication day, 13.5 million dailies and 3.4 million weekly or Sunday papers are sold (2019).

The leading nationwide newspapers are Süddeutsche Zeitung, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Die Welt, Die Zeit, taz, and Handelsblatt, and all stand out for investigative research, analysis, background, and comprehensive commentary. News magazine Der Spiegel and the yellow-press publication Bild are considered the most-quoted media.

Publishing industry in flux

At the same time, the sector is undergoing a profound structural change. For the last 15 years, circulation of printed newspapers has been falling substantially. They are increasingly rarely reaching younger readers, and with circulation figures and advertising revenues dwindling, they are in difficult financial waters. Most newspapers have now introduced pay-on-demand systems for their Internet offerings.

The publishing industry is in flux – amongst other things because meanwhile almost 800,000 newspaper copies sold daily are distributed digitally and the number of digital subscriptions is continually rising. Nevertheless, a total of around 38 million people in Germany still read a printed newspaper every day, while around 14.6 million make use of newspapers’ digital offerings.