I've just been catching up on some old podcasts today on my shiny new iPod Touch (the discount we get through work makes it significantly cheaper than the displayed price, but if you're not as lucky as me, Amazon is the next cheapest place I've found). Anyway, one of the podcasts I listen to is the Friday Night Comedy from BBC Radio 4 podcast which is just the Friday 6:30pm comedy served up in podcast format for those like me who don't always catch it when it's first broadcast. The episode from 14 August 2009 - Steve Punt & Hugh Dennis's "The Now Show" - had a brilliant explanation of what your newspaper says about it.

In the news in the week building up to this podcast, there was talk about how newspapers were losing money and may soon disappear thanks to the internet. They then brought up a good point: the first question in nearly every single marketing survey in this country starts with the same question: "What newspaper do you read?" and there's good reason for this. According to Punt & Dennis, a lot more is said about you from this single question than the rest of the questions thanks to this old adage...

The Times is read by the people who run the country.
The Telegraph is read by the people think they run the country.
The Guardian is read by the people who have run the country for the past 12 years and realised they're blown it.
The Independent is read by people who got to the newsagents after they'd run out of The Guardian and The Times.
The Mail is read by the wives of the people who run the country.
The Express is read Marcus Brigstocke to wind himself up.
The Mirror is read by the people who vote for the people who read the Guardian and have now blown it.
The Sun is read people who'll vote for people who'll run the country to suit the people who read the Financial Times while somehow convincing themselves that those people will give a toss about the people who buy The Sun the moment the election's over.
And The Star is read very ... slowly ... with your lips moving.

I've not heard this before and based on my own experience, it's pretty accurate, especially the part about The Independent; that's the only reason I end up buying The Independent.

If you've got a few spare megabytes on your MP3 player and an internet connection, I definitely recommend the Friday Night Comedy from BBC Radio 4 podcast. And best of all, you don't have to be a UK resident to get this content.