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Austria – (E2) Media ownership concentration regional (local) level

Score in short:

On a regional level, ownership concentration is very high. In most Austrian regions one newspaper is dominant; the ORF dominates the local radio market.

Score in detail:

With regard to television, local or regional broadcasters play an insignificant role. Non-commercial broadcasting projects are still relatively young and therefore mainly niche programs bound to specific local (mainly urban) areas (e.g., Radiofabrik Salzburg, Okto TV). On the contrary, the Austrian radio market is dominated by regional channels. In all nine provinces, the regional public service program (Ö2) leads with market shares ranging from 16 % (Vienna) to 45 % (Burgenland). Several small private channels are part of trans-regional chains (Antenne, Arabella).

Table 7. Radio: daily reach and market share in Austrian regions (2008)

Table continues…

*Daily listeners in percent of local population.

Sources: All data based on Radiotest, local channels: ORF Enterprise (2008), first and second rank: local public service broadcaster compared to private broadcaster with highest reach in the region, data from first half 2008, all other data: Media-Analyse (2008, pp. 154-194), own calculations.

The leading national newspapers (Kronen Zeitung, Kurier, Österreich) provide local editions partly produced by local editorial staff. Kronen Zeitung is market leader in four of the nine provinces, being second to regional newspapers in another four and reaching up to 55.5 % of the local population. In Austria’s most western province, the Vorarlberger Medienhaus occupies a quasi-monopoly on the newspaper market (Vorarlberger Nachrichten, Neue Vorarlberger Tageszeitung), reaching 79.9 % of the local population. Moreover, the company is the largest online news provider and runs the only regional private radio station (Antenne Vorarlberg) (Melischek et al. 2005, p. 249).

Table 8. Audience share of Austrian paid-for dailies with highest reach on regional level (2008)

To be added.