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U-T San Diego Circulation Drops 5 Percent In Last Year

Newspaper no longer one of top 25 U.S. dailies

U-T San Diego has fallen out of the top 25 national daily newspapers, according to new numbers released by the Audit Bureau of Circulations.

U-T San Diego has fallen out of the top 25 national daily newspapers, according to new numbers released by the Audit Bureau of Circulations.

The paper lost 17,000 readers on its Sunday's paper alone in the past year.

The paper’s average circulation on Sunday dropped from 368,723 one year ago to 351,682, a decline of nearly 5 percent. The decrease contradicts comments U-T San Diego owner and hotel developer Doug Manchester made two weeks ago that circulation was up.

But U-T CEO John Lynch said there is no contradiction.

In a statement, Lynch said that readership was declining at a greater rate before Manchester bought the paper a year ago. He said the paper’s redesign, the launch of a paid digital model in July and its multi-platform approach have proven a hit with readers.

"As a result, our circulation is surging and should be well above in next year's measurement," Lynch said.

Some readers have expressed anger at the new ownership’s front-page editorials and what's perceived as promoting a conservative agenda. The Poynter Institute’s media and business analyst Rick Edmonds said that perception is unlikely the only reason for the paper’s readership decline.

“As time goes on, most of the people get their news from digital and they may not take the paper at all," Edmonds said.

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