As circulation has become an increasingly important revenue source for publishers, many of the programs and rules developed over previous years are no longer needed. AAM is supporting magazine media with a new initiative that reflects today’s market priorities by streamlining reports and data, updating reporting requirements, and modernizing the audit process while ensuring buyers have the necessary information to make informed decisions and transact in a trusted environment.
These modifications have received full support from the AAM board and are effective January 1, 2022, for June 2022 publisher’s statements and June 2022-ending audits. They include the following highlights:
- Modernize the audit process. Shift audits to a 24-month cycle with increased analytical review, an emphasis on trending and evaluation, and greater investment in review at the time of filing instead of a year later during the audit. The audit report will include reconciliation for all issues in the 24-month period.
- Update Rapid Report requirements. Increase the reporting threshold in Rapid Report so only U.S. magazines with more than 500,000 circulation are required to report issue-by-issue projections. Magazines below 500,000 are strongly encouraged to participate to provide their media buying partners up-to-date information. The interface will be enhanced with an upload feature to help publishers submit information faster.
- Simplify average price reporting. Update the calculation for average price reporting to make it more intuitive for publishers to determine and reflects what buyers expect.
- Condense verified and analyzed nonpaid circulation reporting categories. With fewer magazine publishers using nonpaid circulation programs, AAM is streamlining the reporting of verified and analyzed nonpaid circulation by condensing subcategories and moving some analyzed nonpaid circulation into verified.
- Simplify membership reporting. Reduce detailed membership reporting for association and club, deductible and nondeductible programs. Create a new reporting category for opportunities where the magazine is one component of a larger package associated with a membership opportunity branded with the magazine.
- Revise and eliminate additional rules, including:
- Update post-expire rules to include three months of service regardless of the original subscription term.
- Shift deferred circulation copies to individually paid and copies used in school classrooms to sponsored subscriptions.
- Eliminate unused transfer qualifications guidelines.
- Eliminate channels of sales reporting.
- Align Canadian and U.S. rules for multi-title digital programs.
In this hub, we share a variety of educational resources to help magazine media publishers and buyers better understand how these changes reflect the current market conditions and enhance buyer/seller communications with greater trust and transparency. If you have any questions about how these changes may impact your publication, please contact your audit manager.
Rule and Audit Resources