A UK magazine
publisher, bought by AOL Time Warner
in July 2001 for 1.15 billion pounds. With over 100 titles, they are one of the largest magazine publishers in the UK
, and their magazine What's On TV
is the best-selling in the country. According to IPC Media's own statistics
, they sell 11 magazines a second (almost 350, 000, 000 each year) which are read by 64% of men and 73% of women in the country.
IPC Media is also a clear example of the problems of media concentration. Although many of the publications are widely respected, they also raise issues concerning conflicts of interest and subtle corporate cross-promotion. For example, the NME is the most widely read music newspaper in the UK. It is owned by IPC Media, which in turn is owned by AOL Time Warner. AOL Time Warner also owns Warner Music. As far as I am aware, no studies into possible pro-Warner Music bias in the NME have been carried out, but it seems hard to believe that the magazine would not try and help out its sister company through positive reviews or advertising concessions. A similar situation exists with What's On TV, which is in effect owned by the same people who own Warner HBO.
It's still open to debate whether or not these outside interests affect the editorial content of IPC Media's publications, but they are certainly worth bearing in mind whilst reading them.
Divisions of IPC Media
A selection of IPC's most popular publications
Sources and more information: