MOLINE, Ill. – More U.S. daily newspapers use TownNews.com's BLOX CMS than any other content management system, says a report released by the Reynolds Journalism Institute at the University of Missouri.
"More than half the dailies (with detectable systems) prefer the BLOX CMS," said the report, which was authored by RJI Fellow Barrett Golding.
By Golding's count, BLOX CMS is being used by 59 percent of the daily newspapers with detectable systems.
The RJI's "The Tools We Use" report—posted September 1, 2015—checked on 1,303 dailies and 203 alternative weeklies.
Of the 1,506 newspapers checked, Golding's tech-detectors returned good CMS data on 698 sites. "Most of these use either. . . (WordPress, Joomla or Drupal) or the proprietary BLOX CMS. . ."
"BLOX CMS is made for newspapers and owned by a newspaper company, Lee Enterprises' TownNews.com. It's filled with news-specific features such as classifieds, an editorial section and a pay model option. BLOX CMS is plug-and-play, but you have to pay," the RJI report said.
Golding noted that with BLOX Total CMS "articles automatically move into InDesign for print production." BLOX CMS simultaneously flows content onto Web pages and mobile devices.
Golding said that WordPress and Drupal newspapers have a slightly higher average circulation. WordPress' average was 48,850, Drupal 43,600 and BLOX CMS 40,377. The report said the median circulation of all three systems is 19,000.
The report listed the five largest BLOX CMS papers as the St. Louis Post-Dispatch (639,393), the Omaha World-Herald (375,767), Richmond Times-Dispatch (352,529), Tulsa World (246,353) and the Roanoke Times (203,994).
Drupal's largest papers by circulation are the Las Vegas Review-Journal (514,368), the Virginian-Pilot (392,357), Florida Times-Union (317,347), Boston Herald (288,591) and Augusta Chronicle (148,078). (The Virginian-Pilot has signed a contract to convert to BLOX CMS by the end of the year.)
WordPress' top five papers by circulation are the New York Post (1,347,214), Seattle Times (854,077), Chicago Sun-Times (682,204), Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (508,250) and the Albuquerque Journal (268,089).
Golding said "many caveats accompany" his data.
"In short, this data is generally more informative than exact," he noted. "None of the three services I used detected a CMS for more than 800 sites (of 1,506 checked). Some of these use NewsGate. Other proprietary CMSs that may run other U.S. newspaper sites are Escenic, Cxense and NewsCycle."
For more details, see the report.
TownNews.com provides state-of-the-art online, publishing and revenue solutions. TownNews.com works with more than 1,600 news organizations, producing more than 1 billion ad impressions, and nearly three-quarters of one billion page views monthly. Member newspapers include dailies, weeklies, TV and radio stations, shoppers and specialty publications from groups and independents in all 50 states and Canada. TownNews.com is headquartered in Moline, Illinois.