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Plain Dealer cuts home delivery to 3 days a week

| Friday, April 5, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

The Plain Dealer in Cleveland announced on Thursday that it is cutting back home delivery of the newspaper to three days a week.

The Plain Dealer, Ohio's largest daily, will be delivered on Sunday and two other still unspecified days of the week beginning in late summer, publisher Terry Egger said in a statement. The newspaper will still be printed every day and will be available for purchase at thousands of outlets in northeast Ohio.

A new digitally focused media company called Northeast Ohio Media Group will start this summer. The organization will be responsible for all ad sales and marketing for The Plain Dealer and will oversee the operation of Cleveland.com website and Sun News, a chain of weekly newspapers.

The Northeast Ohio Media Group and The Plain Dealer Publishing Co. will provide content for all print and digital platforms. “These actions are aimed at driving innovation, capitalizing on the tremendous strengths of our existing organizations, preserving high-quality journalism and marketing solutions, and providing greater efficiency and flexibility in serving Northeast Ohio through print and digital applications,” Egger said.

The newspaper, which has a weekday circulation of about 286,400, is owned by New York-based Advance Publications Inc., a private company owned by the Newhouse family.

The move by Advance in Cleveland follows similar cuts at the company's newspapers in Pennsylvania, New York, Louisiana, Alabama and Michigan in recent years.

Earlier this year, Advance cut printing of the Patriot-News in Harrisburg to three days a week and limited home delivery of the Post-Standard in Syracuse, N.Y., to three days a week. Like the plans for Cleveland, the Post-Standard can be purchased seven days a week.

Last year, the company reduced its printing schedule to three days a week at the Times-Picayune in New Orleans and The Birmingham News in Alabama.

And in 2011, Advance's seven papers in Michigan consolidated into a new digitally focused company, MLive Media Group, and cut home delivery to three days a week.

Advance's largest newspapers, the Oregonian in Portland and the Star-Ledger in Newark, continue seven-day publication and home delivery.

While Advance has made some of the most dramatic changes to daily newspapers as it deals with the shift of readers to the Internet, other newspapers in recent years have shut down completely or converted to online-only publications.

The Associated Press and Trib Total Media staff writer Alex Nixon contributed to this report.

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