The Audit Bureau of Circulations, one of Canada's two leading circulation audit firms (the other being CCAB), announced a price freeze for many of its customers and several revisions to existing rules. It cut in half the costs for many larger Canadian magazines and newspapers and introduced a flat-rate billing model for field audits, effectively freezing rates for the rest, saying it was "responding to current market conditions", according to a story in Media in Canada.
In addition, ABC will unveil several new online filing tools in September that allow publishers to further lower their costs by digitally submitting advance audit documentation and worksheets.
"ABC has typically billed publishers based on an hourly rate," said Michael J. Lavery, ABC's president/MD. "Our new structure uses a flat rate based on the most recent ABC audit. By streamlining some aspects of the audit and automating more processes, most publications will be able to accurately forecast and control their costs."
Lavery added that large metropolitan newspapers would continue to be billed on the hourly model due to the complexity of their audits. Those rates, however, will remain frozen at their 2007 level.