Ed Bedford 6 p.m., March 11
Union-Tribune's December House Organ Doesn't Report Circulation Figures
For many years, the Union-Tribune has revealed its circulation figures to employees in a monthly internal publication called "Inside Edition." But the December edition does not have those numbers. Since circulation has been inexorably declining for years, and the Union-Tribune is trying to sell itself, I wondered if there might be a reason those numbers were omitted. On Monday (Dec. 8) I sent an email to Sid Shapira, internal communications manager and editor of the publication, asking why the numbers were left out. He didn't respond. So today (Tues.), I called him. "How did you get my number?" he asked abruptly. I told him that one could get it by googling "sid shapira" +"union-tribune." He said, "I am not a spokesperson for the company." So I called Drew Schlosberg, community and public relations director, who, as far as I can remember, has never returned one of my calls. So why is the U-T not reporting circulation numbers? One reason may be that in 1999, daily circulation was 381,256. As of September of this year, it was down to 269,819, according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations. San Diego County is the nation's 17th largest metro area. But the U-T's circulation is 23rd among dailies. Its online usage is not even in the top 30.