While most party newspapers and magazines passed their zenith years ago, party-affiliated online media have been booming recently. Their potential impact should not be underestimated.
“We have to become younger, more modern and cooler, find other approaches and take young people seriously”, said Markus Söder, Minister-President of Bavaria, in his closing remarks to the board of the Christian Social Union (CSU) in 2019. The party should “reallocate analogue resources” to digitalisation. “The old world,” he said, “is beginning to say goodbye.”
What this meant in practical terms: the CSU discontinued their traditional party magazine Bayernkurier after almost seven decades and started investing more in video content and YouTube outreach instead.
During the second half of the 20th century, party magazines were all the rage in the German-speaking “old world”. Then, they slipped into near irrelevance, many disappeared. But in recent years, more and more parties tried to resurrect them in the form of affiliated online platforms – some with great success.