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Post Charlie Hebdo and the Surcharge
Created by John Eipper on 01/15/15 3:43 AM

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Charlie Hebdo and the Surcharge (Randy Black, USA, 01/15/15 3:43 am)

In his post of January 14th, Eugenio Battaglia seemed concerned with profiteering intentions on the part of the publishers of Charlie Hebdo. It's been a matter of public record for several days that the profits will go to the families of the dead journalists, support staff and artists.

My simple Web search quickly found numerous stories that all essentially stated, "Proceeds from the new edition will go to victims' families. A version will be published in predominantly Muslim Turkey as an inset in the centre-left opposition daily Cumhuriyet, one of the paper's journalists said."

The current issue costs 3 Euros, so about $3.50 US.

Another site said this new issue print will run to five million copies in six languages, including Arabic, Italian, German, English, etc.

The initial press run of 700,000 was sold out before dawn on January 14. It will take several days to complete the final quantities required and in my opinion, will eventually run many more than five million.

Finally, readers should understand that any price on any print publication is not all profit by a long shot. Cost of printing and distribution, sales commissions to the kiosk street outlets and book stores get their cut, as do the licensed distribution firms. It's likely that those related costs will eat up something on the order of 80 percent of the newsstand price.

Generally, any print publication is supported by its advertising revenue. I have not seen the publication and have no clue as to its advertising revenue, if any. Due to the controversy of the publication, there is likely very limited advertising, if any.

Moreover, the advertising revenue is generally related to the exact circulation figures. For instance, the ad revenue, if any, would have been determined by their established normal circulation, in this case, they publish the accepted circulation number 30,000 to 60,000 per weekly issue.

Because this week's circulation will be in the many millions and likely become a "collector's" issue. It's anyone's guess who if any will benefit beyond the families of the murdered staff members.

But, I can assure Eugenio that, contrary to his stated position, "nothing was thrown to the hogs."

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JE comments: I checked eBay, and there dozens of copies of yesterday's CH starting at $100 all the way up to $70K (?).  In a couple of weeks you'll be able to get yours for €3.  The far rarer issue would be the one from last Wednesday (7 January).  This Belgian vendor will sell you the two final pre-Massacre Charlies for $275,000, or "make an offer":


And they say the French have no word for entrepreneurship.

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  • Charlie Hebdo and the Surcharge (Eugenio Battaglia, Italy 01/15/15 3:36 PM)
    With reference to the French magazine Charlie Hebdo, the 50-cent surcharge I described as being "thrown to the hogs," a view Randy Black questioned, was strictly my judgement, because I consider CH's humor to be of no value.

    A free press is fine, but free obscenity and insults are not worth even 1 cent. If you do not believe in a religion you should not insult its believers but, eventually, try to convince them why they may be wrong.

    I do not believe in Allah and in His Prophet.  Going back to the other WAIS topic of the week, I believe in only one God (even if in a Trinity) for all humanity, but unfortunately in different religions He may be erroneously presented by His followers. For instance, I believe that the God presented in the Old Testament is incompatible with the God presented in the New Testament.

    JE comments: The New Testament God definitely got a lot nicer.

    And as an update, the Belgian eBayer who wants $275,000 for the last two pre-massacre issues of Charlie Hebdo still hasn't found a taker.  It hasn't been for a lack of publicity on WAIS.

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