Newspapers in Sweden
In the mid-1980s, the Swedish media landscape consisted of two TV channels,
four radio channels, a very dominant morning press and two nationwide evening
newspapers. In less than a generation, this has fundamentally changed. The state
monopoly in telephony, radio and television is gone, while new technology and
new players have been challenged and in many cases broken the daily press's
New technology, which has significantly reduced the costs of production and
distribution, has also meant that the boundaries between media companies are
loosened. In 2014, for example, web TV is an integral part of many newspapers'
During the period, the large groups restructured their operations through
mainly acquisitions, closures and cost savings. The media market in 2014 is
characterized by a significantly higher ownership concentration than 30 years
ago. Three families, Bonnier (Bonnier AB), Hjörne (Stampen) and Stenbeck (MTG,
Metro), and a foundation-controlled limited company, Schibsted, are the dominant
media owners, all except Stampen with nationwide operations in several areas.
Internet and mobile telephony
Sweden was out early with computers and internet connection in households.
After the dissemination phase 1995–2005 and the broadband phase 2005–10, the
Swedes are now in the mobile phase. In 2013, more than half use mobile or tablet
to connect to the Internet, and the proportion is steadily increasing. The
proportion of Swedish households with access to the Internet is just over 90%.
Global sites like Google, Facebook and YouTube are among the most visited.
Only one media site, Aftonbladet.se, is included in ten in the top list. The
list also includes Blocket, whose business concept has basically killed off the
cashback text ads long been for the daily press.
There are four mobile operators with their own 3G networks: Telia, Tele2,
Telenor and 3. The largest is Telia, owned by TeliaSonera AB and second largest
is Tele2, owned by the Stenbeck family, which under the name Comviq started to
challenge the Swedish telecommunications monopoly at the beginning of 1980s.
The position of the daily press has long been extremely strong, especially in
the countryside, compared to other countries. High literacy, home newspapers,
press support, objective reporting on news sites and the lack of commercial
alternatives in radio and television have been the main reasons.
In total, about 80 paid newspapers are published, with 4–7 issues per week
and just over the same number of daily newspapers, ie. published 1-3 times a
week. In Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmö, the four groups Bonniers, Stampen,
Schibsted and MTG are responsible for virtually all daily newspaper publishing.
The regional press is in principle divided into six groups: Stampen, Mittmedia,
Gota Media, Norrköpings Tidningar Media (NTM), the NWT Group and Herenco. In
addition, there are a few family or privately owned newspapers that are not part
of any group.
Bonniers held a very strong position in Stockholm until the early 1990s with
the newspapers Dagens Nyheter, Dagens Industri and Expressen. The circulation
stage, especially for Expressen, and Metro's establishment have reduced the
Group's dominance. In 1994 Sydsvenskan and Kvällsposten were acquired in Malmö
and in 1997 the evening newspaper GT in Gothenburg. Kvällsposten and GT are
since 1998 editions of Expressen.
Norwegian Schibsted entered the Swedish market through the acquisition of
Aftonbladet in 1996 and Svenska Dagbladet in 1998. In 2003, Blocket was
acquired, today one of the Group's largest cash cakes with a profit of 415
Stampen, whose main newspaper is Göteborgs-Posten, began a major expansion in
the mid-2000s and acquired, among other things. VLT Group and Nerikes Allehanda.
The stamp publishes some 20 morning newspapers today. The expansion has had a
high price and the Group is struggling with difficult financial problems.
The Stenbeck family MTG established itself in the daily press market in
Stockholm in 1995 with Metro, Sweden's first free newspaper. In 1998, an edition
was started in Gothenburg and since 1999 there is Metro in Malmö. The
newspaper's target group, unlike the paid morning newspapers, is primarily
younger readers, but the establishment has nevertheless significantly reduced
advertising revenue for the morning press, especially when it comes to housing
As far back as the 1960s, most rural newspapers were foundation or
party-owned, or family-owned one-time newspaper companies. After half a century
of acquisitions and mergers, the ownership picture in 2013 has changed
completely. The labor movement, which in the early 1980s owned some 30
newspapers, has a wholly owned newspaper, Värmlands Folkblad. The Center Party
sold its local magazines in 2005.
Of the previously mentioned groups, Stampen is the largest, followed by
Bonnier and the foundation-owned groups Schibsted, Mittmedia, Gota Media and
NTM. The two smallest groups, NWT and Herenco, are family owned.
The Group's strategies have been broadly similar - to achieve monopoly in
each distribution area and to coordinate text production, editing, printing,
distribution, advertising sales and key functions such as IT and human resources
departments. On the other hand, the groups have differed when it comes to
investing in the Internet. NTM has, for example, has always been at the
forefront while NWT and Herenco have been more cautious. Herenco's five
newspapers in Småland were not published on the Internet until 2013.
The system of state press subsidy means that it has been a good deal to take
over the second newspaper in each place, which has left many center-partist and
social-democratic newspapers alive. Often, however, only the leader page and the
name of the second newspaper differ from the first newspaper.
The world's longest published daily newspaper was Swedish, namely Post- och
Inrikes Tidningar, which with short interruptions, under various titles, was
published as a paper newspaper in 1645–2006. Since 2007, Post- och Inrikes
Tidningar has been published in electronic form on the Swedish Companies
Agency's website. Three years after the 1766 printing freedom regulation came
the first daily newspaper, Daglig Allehanda.
The first modern newspapers were Aftonbladet (founded in 1830) and the
Gothenburg Trade and Shipping Magazine (1832–1973), both bodies of the liberal
opposition to Karl XIV Johan. Newspapers with low prices and easily accessible
content intended for a general public began to be published during the latter
part of the 19th century: Gothenburg Post (founded 1859), Dagens Nyheter (1864),
Skånska Dagbladet in Malmö (1888) and Stockholm-Tidningen (1889) –1966,
The daily newspaper reading was further spread through the political parties
'and popular movements' newspaper starts: The Social Democrat in Stockholm
(1885–1958), Work in Malmö (1887–2000), Svenska Morgonbladet in Stockholm
(1890–1958) and New Era in Gothenburg (1892–1966)). At the same time, the first
trade union newspapers were started (see trade union press).
Faster production methods, improved distribution and increased interest in
news led to an increasing number of daily newspapers around the turn of the last
century. The model became from Dagens Nyheter from the 1910s. During the latter
part of the 1920s a new type of newspaper was launched, the richly illustrated
newspaper in a small format: Stockholm Dagblad (from 1926 to 1931), later
Aftonbladet (from 1931) and Expressen (founded in 1944). Since then, very few
newspapers have been started; the most notable are the business newspaper Dagens
Industri, 1983 and Metro, 1995. A further change in the Swedish daily press took
place in the early 2000s when almost all full-size newspapers went into tabloid
Magazines and magazines
The Swedish magazine market can be roughly divided into popular press and
trade press. The popular press includes family magazines, specialty magazines,
fashion magazines and some weekly magazines. The trade press includes
organizational press, trade union press, industry magazines and member
magazines. There are no complete statistics on the number of journals, but in
2013 the Royal Library has more than 7,000 titles registered. Of these, about
400 are available for purchase in the trade, while the remainder is
predominantly trade press, distributed by mail.
Three groups are leading in the magazine market in 2014: Bonnier AB,
Danish-owned Aller Media and Danish-owned Egmont. The three are also owners of
the distributor Tidsam, which has about 90% of the market with its approximately
8,000 retailers. Tidsam has been criticized by several smaller magazine
publishers for favoring their owners and not submitting new titles.
New production technology has reduced both the cost and the time to establish
new magazines, which has made it easier for smaller publishers to launch new
titles. A trend in recent years is that more and more niche journals are being
launched. In 2013, 102 new journals were started and 135 closed, a sign that the
market is starting to become saturated. There were over 900 registered magazine
publishers, of which just over half were sole proprietors.
Since the beginning of the 2010s, the boundaries between TV viewing in
computer, tablet, mobile or TV set have increasingly blurred. One sign is that
Radio Service 2013 began to collect a TV fee from the person who has a computer
or tablet with the motivation that TV broadcasts are available on the internet,
a decision that was torn down by the Supreme Administrative Court in 2014.
Another trend is that tabloid TV viewing is dying out, except for live
broadcasts of sporting events and the like. Consumers want to be able to look at
what they want, whenever they want, anywhere. Virtually all channels also offer
video-on-demand or so-called play services. The most common form of TV reception
is via cable, followed by digital terrestrial network and satellite, but all
three forms decrease, as more and more people switch to IPTV, broadband
The digitization, which began in 1999, has meant that new players have
established themselves and that a large number of new channels have been
started. In 2013, however, three major broadcasters dominate: Bonniers, Sweden's
Television and Stenbeck-owned MTG. Together, their channels in 2012 occupied
approximately 80% of the audience's viewing time.
Bonniers has the largest range on the market. The group includes the TV4
group with four channels, Sjuan and C More (formerly Canal Plus) with 27
channels. TV4 also has 25 local channels that broadcast news.
License-financed Sweden Television has the main channels SVT1 and SVT2 as
well as the Children's Channel, the Knowledge Channel, SVT 24 and SVT World. In
addition, 27 local news channels are included. In 2013, SVT launched the open
archive service, the goal of which is to make a large part of the company's own
produced programs available before 2005.
MTG has the advertising-funded channels TV3, TV6, TV8 and TV10. In addition,
the Group owns Viasat with eight pay channels.
Regular, license-funded TV broadcasts started in 1956 as a monopoly with a
channel under the auspices of Swedish Radio. In 1969, TV2 started within the
same company, with the task of competing with TV1. The following year, the
channels began to broadcast in color and the first regional news program,
Sydnytt i Skåne, was launched, soon followed by Nordnytt, Västnytt and Mittnytt.
Only in the late 1980s was the whole country covered by regional news channels.
Already in 1986, the TV monopoly began to be broken when cable TV was
introduced, but it was only in 1987, when Jan Stenbeck launched TV3, that
advertising TV seriously entered the Swedish living rooms. By broadcasting via
satellite from London, TV3 was able to circumvent Swedish legislation. In order
to stop TV3 and other commercial actors, a ban on satellite dishes was
discussed. social democratic women's association.
In 1991, the Riksdag decided that a third, terrestrial advertising-financed
channel should be started. The concession went to TV4, which began broadcasting
in 1992. Since then, a large number of advertising channels have been started.
In 1999, terrestrial digital TV began to be broadcast and in 2005 the first
broadcasts in HDTV began.
By far the largest in the Swedish market is license-funded Sweden's Radio,
which with its four main channels has a daily reach of 58% of the population
(2014). The company has made great efforts to adapt to the demands of consumers
that all programs should be available around the clock and has developed the web
service Sweden's Radio Play, adapted for computers and various mobile platforms.
The analogue commercial radio is completely dominated by two companies,
Stenbeck's MTG Radio and Bauer Media Group Sweden, formerly SBS Radio. MTG has
47 stations where the Rix FM network is the largest. Bauer Media Group has 54
stations with the networks Mix Megapol and Rock Classics.
The first radio broadcasts were made by private radio clubs in the early
1920s. In 1925, the radio became state-regulated and licensed. In 1955 a second
radio channel started and in 1959 regional broadcasts began. When pirate radio
broadcasts began by Radio Syd and Radio Nord, melody radio was started in P2 in
1961 and in 1962 P3 started.
In the mid-1970s, local radio was launched. Trial broadcasts with local radio
began in 1979, still with advertising bans. Advertising-financed radio was
allowed in 1994, even in local radio.
See also press freedom, daily newspaper, SR International, immigrant
magazine, cable TV, media consumption and news programs.
Book and publishing system
The Swedish book market is not a homogeneous market but consists of a number
of segments with subgroups. The largest is the general literature segment, which
includes fiction, non-fiction for private individuals and children's and youth
books. In addition, teaching materials for the school, course literature for the
university and professional literature. The printed book is about to become one
of several platforms, and in the case of some professional literature, eg. team
texts, the digital publishing plays a bigger role than the printed.
Book industry today
Since the beginning of the 2000s, the industry has undergone a development
with increased sales, which culminated in 2007, increased the number of titles
published and a shift in sales to the online bookstore, which in 2013 had the
same sales as the traditional bookstore. During the period, the previously
important book clubs have also lost significance. Sales of e-books have so far
been marginal but are constantly increasing. In 2002, the VAT on books and
magazines was reduced from 25% to 6%, which resulted in increased book sales,
especially of fiction.
During the period, a small group of large publishing groups has grown larger,
while more and more smaller publishing companies have established themselves.
The Swedish Publishers Association has 63 members (2013), which accounts for
about 70% of the industry's turnover.
In 2013, there were about 300 book publishers with regular publishing. The
majority of them are small and many are run almost on a nonprofit basis. In
2012, 10,733 new works and editions were published according to the Royal
Library's statistics. It also includes doctoral dissertations and writings
published by scientific societies and the like. The number of newly written
Swedish fiction works was 1,225.
Two groups, Bonnier AB and KF Media, dominate the Swedish market. Both have
publishers founded in the early 19th century.
The biggest without comparison is Bonniers with around 15 publishers, among
them Albert Bonniers Förlag, Wahlström & Widstrand, Forum, Bonnier Carlsen and
Semic. During the 2000s, Bonniers made a number of acquisitions and
significantly strengthened its position at the wholesale and retail level
through so-called vertical integration. In 2004, the leading online bookstore
Adlibris was acquired, in 2010 the distributor Pocketgrossisten was purchased
and in 2012 the bookstore chain Pocket Shop with 15 stores. The acquisitions and
the Group's actions have been criticized by several publishers, who believe that
Bonniers utilizes its dominant position to close out competing publishers.
The second largest is Norstedts Förlagshus with, among other things, Sweden's
leading children's book publisher, Rabén & Sjögren. Norstedts has an extensive
publishing of fiction and non-fiction literature and is Sweden's leading
publisher when it comes to dictionaries. The publisher is owned by KF Media, a
subsidiary of the Co-operative Union. KF Media, which was for sale in 2013, also
includes the bookstore chain Akademibokhandel and the online bookstore Bokus.
In recent years, the ICA Group has expanded in the book market. through the
acquisition of Damm Förlag 2006 and B. Wahlström Book publishing 2007. The
business is run in the subsidiary Forma Books, which includes the main publisher
Ica book publishing, focused on professional books.
Within educational materials and course literature, foundation-owned Natur &
Kultur is one of the largest publishers of textbooks from preschool to college.
The publisher also publishes fiction as well as professional and children's
Liber, owned by the British venture capital company Bridgepoint Capital, is
the largest competitor to Nature & Culture and is focused on the entire
education market. Liber is part of Bridgepoint's publishing group Infinitas
Learning, which has operations in seven European countries.
The printing business in the late 1400s and early 1500s formed the basis for
the first publishers, Johannes Smedh and Johann Snell. Later in the 16th century
they were supplemented by bookbinders, among others. Hermann Such. The major
publishers as far back as the 18th century were the chapters and the state (the
Royal Printers in Stockholm). During the 1600s, printing works were established
in several locations in the country.
Individuals could obtain the privileges of engaging in publishing. The
largest private publishing movement of the 17th century was conducted by Henrik
Keyser, who published a number of popular religious works. Ignatius Meurer also
published religious writings as well as significant volumes of casual
Since the printers, through a regulation from 1752, were given the right to
sell their own articles and with the more liberal climate during the period of
freedom, culminating in the 1766 printing freedom regulation, a number of book
printers appeared as publishers in a more modern sense. The leading name was
The 1810 freedom of print regulation meant that the censorship was abolished
and that publishing activities could be based on the principle of copyright.
Literature was in demand by a wider bourgeois audience, and the market expanded
greatly, including. through an extensive publication of entertaining literature
such as robber novels and historical novels. Around 1830, assortment booksellers
appeared as publishers, e.g. Gleerup in Lund and the brothers Adolf and Albert
Bonnier in Stockholm.
To remedy the defective book distribution, the printer and publisher
Zacharias Hæggström in 1843 took the initiative to form the Swedish Publishers
Association (since 1996 the Swedish Publishers Association). Through the
commission system, the association strived to establish effective links between
publishers and bookstores. The addition of the distribution company JU
Burström's forwarding office (1848), later renamed Seelig & Co., improved the
spread of literature. With the introduction of primary school (1842), demand for
During the 1900s, the market grew through cheap book editions and a launch
of, among other things. encyclopedias and popular science works. Within the
serious fiction, Albert Bonnier's Publishers came to dominate from the 1890s
onwards. In areas such as school books and non-fiction, PA Norstedt & Söner
(1823) was a leader. The pocketbooks, which broke through in the 1950s, were
another attempt to broaden the market.
In 1970, the Swedish book market was liberalized. Thus, free pricing and free
right of establishment for bookstore were introduced. Books began to be marketed
at many different outlets, including. in department stores, kiosks and grocery
stores. In the following decades, book clubs became an important sales channel.
The smaller publishers expanded during the 1970s and 1980s, among other things.
since a state literature grant has made it easier to publish quality literature
in small editions.
See also reading tablet and letterpress art (History of book printing in
Among Swedish culture that has given echoes
in the world are among others the film director Ingmar
Bergman, the pop group Abba and actors such as Ingrid
Bergman and Greta Garbo. Children's book author Astrid
Lindgren has become world famous through translations
into some 90 languages. In the 2000s, Swedish decks have
had a major international impact, not least through
Stieg Larsson with the Millennium Trilogy.
Sweden's oldest preserved writings are carved on
Rökstenen in Östergötland and other rune stones. The
Revelations of the Holy Birgitta of the 1300s belong to
the oldest religious literature, a genre that was common
in the Middle Ages.
Latest population statistics of Sweden, including religious profiles and major languages spoken as well as population growth rates in next three decades.
During the 18th century the influence of religion
diminished and cultural life flourished according to the
French model. During this century, King Gustav III
founded the Swedish Academy (which awards the Nobel
Prize in literature) as well as the Royal Theater (The
Opera) and the Royal Dramatic Theater. In the 18th
century also lived the internationally renowned
theologian and philosopher Emanuel Swedenborg, the
sculptor Tobias Sergel, the poet Carl Michael Bellman
and the scientist Carl von Linné.
By the 19th century, romance came to Sweden with
practitioners such as Esaias Tegnér and E J Stagnelius.
The 1890s brought forth several successful writers.
Among them were Selma Lagerlöf, who received the Nobel
Prize in 1909. Historically the most influential Swedish
author, August Strindberg (1849-1912), got his
breakthrough with the novel Red Room 1879.
Internationally, he is best known for his drama, with
works such as Miss Julie.
The Nobel Prize was founded around the turn of the
century by the inventor of dynamite Alfred Nobel and is
today the world's most prestigious literature prize. In
addition to Lagerlöf, it has also gone to Verner von
Heidenstam (1916), Erik Axel Karlfeldt (posthumously,
1931), Pär Lagerkvist (1951), Eyvind Johnson and Harry
Martinson (shared prize 1974), and Tomas Tranströmer
Recently, many established writers and poets include
Tranströmer, among others Per Olov Enquist, Sven
Delblanc, PC Jersild, Lars Gustafsson, Katarina
Frostensson, Göran Tunström, Sara Lidman, Torgny
Lindgren and Kerstin Ekman.
For the visual arts, the 1870s meant a renewal.
Well-known artists are Carl Larsson, Bruno Liljefors and
Anders Zorn. Modernism is associated with Isaac
Grünewald, Sigrid Hjertén and Nils Dardel. Of sculptors,
Carl Milles and Axel Pettersson are distinguished.
Among the artists who made their mark after the
Second World War were Öyvind Fahlström, Per Olov Ultvedt
and Barbro Östlihn, and during the last decades Cecilia
Edefalk, Jockum Nordström and Ann-Sofi Sidén.
Photographers such as Christer Strömholm, Lars Tunbjörk
and Anders Petersen have also been important during the
latter part of the 20th century and until today.
Swedish glass art became world famous in the early
1900s, when designers Simon Gate and Edvard Hald worked
at Orrefors mill. The tradition has been continued with
the names of Ulrica Hydman-Vallien and Bertil Vallien.
Among famous Swedish musicians and composers are
Franz Berwald, Wilhelm Peterson-Berger and Hugo Alfvén.
Swedish choirs and opera singers have attracted
considerable international attention over the years.
Jussi Björling and Birgit Nilsson are among the classics
of opera art. Evert Taube, Olle Adolphson and Cornelis
Vreeswijk have written and performed some of the most
popular Swedish songs.
Swedish pop music achieved an international
breakthrough with the Abba group during the 1970s. In
the 1990s, Roxette, Ace of Base and later, among others,
Cardigans and The Hives ranked high on several foreign
The world has been made aware of Swedish film by
Ingmar Bergman. The seventh seal belongs to his
first films, Fanny and Alexander, among the
latest and most internationally awarded. Roy Andersson,
as the first Swedish to date, was awarded the Gold Lion
at the Venice Film Festival 2014 for A pigeon sat on
a branch and pondered on existence. The film is the
third in a trilogy (the first two films are also
award-winning). Ruben Östlund won the Gold Palm at the
Cannes Film Festival 2017, for his film The Square.
Two other famous directors are Bo Widerberg and Lasse
Hallström. Among Swedish film actors Ingrid Bergman and
Greta Garbo are in a class of their own.
Among today's playwright, Lars Norén is a foreground
figure. For Sweden public policy, please check
Nazis attack anti-racist demonstration
A demonstration against racism in the Stockholm
suburb of Kärrtorp is being attacked by a group of
supporters of the Nazi organization Swedish Resistance
Movement (SMR), armed with slingshots, knuckles and
burning objects. The reactions are getting strong with
protest actions against racism in several parts of the
Battle for stopped tax cuts
The opposition's attempt to tear up a decision on a
higher breaking point for state income tax leads to a
dispute over the parliamentary agenda, which is regarded
as an intermediary between the constitution and ordinary
law. The Government considers that, according to the
Riksdag, it is not possible to break out and change part
of the budget decision that was made in October. The
President therefore stops voting on the proposal. But
the opposition is then pushing for the Constitutional
Committee (KU) to take a position on the issue. KU sends
the question back to Parliament, where the red-green
parties together with the Swedish Democrats vote down
the government's tax cut.
Red green wire
Just over nine months before the parliamentary
elections, the three red-green parties are clearly
leading the Alliance in an opinion poll by Statistics
Sweden. Together, they have the support of 49.8 percent
of voters, against 39.7 percent of the four government
parties. The Swedish Democrats are the third largest
party with 9.3 percent, according to the survey.
Impaired school results
The annual Pisa study on school pupils' results is a
bleak reading for Sweden. It turns out that Swedish
15-year-olds' knowledge of mathematics, reading
comprehension and science has fallen sharply in a few
years, and more so than in all other OECD countries.
Germany-born Antje Jackelén, bishop of Lund's
diocese, wins the archbishop's election by a clear
margin, and the Swedish Church thus gets its first
female archbishop. Jackelén has been mentioned before
for questioning the virgin birth and saying that she
believes in the theory of evolution. She succeeds Anders
Wejryd in June 2014.
Obama on State Visit
US President Barachk Obama visits Sweden and
discusses, among other things, free trade and climate
issues with Prime Minister Reinfeldt.
Permanent residence permit for Syrians
The Migration Board decides that all Syrians who come
to Sweden will be allowed to stay indefinitely. Up to
8,000 Syrians in the country with temporary residence
permits now have them changed to permanent status. The
background is the severe conflict in Syria.
HD decisions favor tax savers
The Supreme Court ruled that a person who was forced
to pay a tax surcharge cannot also be sentenced to
prison, since both EU law and the European Convention
prohibit double punishment - being sentenced twice for
the same crime. HD decides that the ban on double
punishment should apply retroactively from February
2009, when the European Court of Justice established a
new practice. Hundreds of people convicted of tax
offenses can now claim a raise and claim damages from
the state. Even before HD's decision, a number of
imprisoned tax smiths have been released prematurely
since it was clear what the outcome would be.
Rwandans convicted of genocide
A 54-year-old man from Rwanda is sentenced to life
imprisonment for genocide and serious international law
violation against Tutsis in his home country. This is
the first time anyone has been convicted of genocide in
Youth ravages in Husby
The unrest erupts in the Stockholm suburb and spreads
to a number of other suburbs as well as to other cities.
The Swedish Democrats claim that the suburban riots are
a result of overly generous immigration, but the party
goes back in public opinion and gets 6.6 percent in
Sifo's voter barometer.