Ad watch: The Fin, The Oz look thin. The weekend edition of The Australian Financial Review would seem a financial disaster for Fairfax. While the 64-page edition was about the size it has become, it contained just six advertisements. The biggest was a full-page from GE which was part of a campaign with the same ad in The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age and The Weekend Australian (which was pretty thin in the ad area as well). Of the six ads, three were either a house ad for the AFR (one) or involved charity fundraising events where the paper is a sponsor (two).

The ad ratio for the paper was less than 3%, which is terrible and reflects the decision by the federal government to switch most of its job ads online. With sales of around 70,000 the paper would have had circulation revenue of $200,000 to $210,000 at best. Production and editorial costs would have been in excess of that. Not a good look for the paper’s editor-in-chief Michael Stutchbury or chief executive Brett Clegg.

Today’s edition of The Australian wasn’t much stronger. There were 14 display ads (no jobs) with four of those related to The Oz itself or News Ltd (Career One), plus around a quarter of a page of general notices on page 34 as around half a page of interest rate changes from the National Australia Bank and BankWest after rate cuts last Friday. The most prominent advertiser was Credit Suisse with two half-pages. GE Capital was another advertiser. It can’t have been a profitable edition. — Glenn Dyer


Bishop feels the pain of Fairfax’s job cuts. We guess this is what happens when you get rid of all of your sub-editors and many of your journalists? The actual article page on The Sydney Morning Herald from August 30 did also contain a picture of Julie Bishop (relevance unknown) but that has now been removed.

Video of the day. Mitt Romney was the clear winner from last week’s presidential debate, but just how does the Republican nominee stand up next to his fiercest debating opponent? Watch Mitt Romney debate Mitt Romney.

Front page of the day. As Venezuela heads to the polls to decide whether Hugo Chavez should remain as president, the country’s El Universal newspaper offers readers how-to-vote instructions on its front page.

Cabinet considers new media regulations

“Media outlets face new ownership restrictions, a public interest test and the introduction of laws protecting the privacy of individuals under industry reforms being finalised by the government.” — The Australian

British PM commits to Leveson recommendations

“David Cameron has said he will stick to his promise to implement the Leveson inquiry’s recommendations, providing the regulatory measures put forward are sensible.” — The Guardian

Women’s mags new front in US election

“As the candidates for president debate in the press over weighty topics like taxes and health care, their wives are waging their own campaigns in women’s and celebrity magazines to show voters their spouses’ softer sides.” — The New York Times