The Plain Dealer continues to bleed circulation both daily and on Sundays.

Unfortunately, the Cleveland paper dropped another 8.14 percent in daily newspaper circulation, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulation. The figures are for the six month period ending March 31.

Sunday circulation dropped 7.87 percent, from 393,352 to 362,394.

The report for this period can be seen at Editor & Publisher here:

The figures show a drop in circulation of 23,742 over the similar period in 2009 when circulation had dropped from over 300,000 to 291,630.

This steady drop in circulation damages the newspapers revenue since advertising is generally sold based on circulation figures. The higher circulation figures, the higher rate for advertising.

I notice that the paper is being kept slim with news space dependent on advertising space. The only portion of the paper that seems to not have to follow that schedule is the sports section.

It appears that the Plain Dealer feels that sports draws circulation, therefore, even the dearth of advertising requires the inordinate space given sports.

Hard news, however, takes a beating under this philosophy.

In 2007, the daily circulation was 334,194 and Sunday circulation of 445,795. Sunday circulation in 2009 was 393,352.

The continued drop in circulation comes at a time that the newspaper has been vigorous in following the Cuyahoga County corruption issue and sports events, including the Cavs excellent season, now in the playoffs.


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