Paperboys Cry–Connecticut Post Print Circulation Plummets By More Than Half In Five Years, Under 3,000 Home Delivery In Bridgeport

Newspaper print editions are dying as harried news executives seek creative ways to stay alive in digital markets. Once the media powerhouse in southern Connecticut, the Connecticut Post has experienced a precipitous drop in total paid print circulation from upwards of 100,000 on Sundays 40 years ago to about 16,000 Sunday home delivery today, according to latest figures by data-driven Alliance For Audited Media that tracks newspaper viability. Those numbers reflect the combined totals of all the towns where the paper circulates.

The scarce weekday home delivery is more sobering. See numbers above.

It’s not just the Post, it’s almost everywhere. In Bridgeport, Connecticut’s largest city, The Post’s paid home circulation on Sunday is under 3,000, less on weekdays, according to the numbers by zip code. Think about it this way, Bridgeport has roughly 50,000 households. The Post’s household penetration is but an anemic few percent.

To be fair, digital has absorbed many of the old newspaper readers, but media outlets such as the Post have implemented paywalls that restrict access to content to promote paid subscriptions that come with many unknowns and trapdoors in a still-new industry. For instance, breaking news content provides all access at the Post, but feature content such as enterprise reporting, columnists, business news and some sports can only be accessed by a paid subscription under the paywall banner CTInsider.

The Post launched its paywall in the fall of 2019 so at this point only the suits at Hearst Media ownership can project if revenue from a few thousand digital subscriptions offsets the loss in readership such as impression clicks the industry sells to advertisers. Some of this depends on the strength of the content. What are people getting for their buck?

For that matter what’s the return on investment for print edition advertisers relying on diminishing household circulation?

Hearst Media has a model that could work transitionally given its hefty digital footprint, the largest in Connecticut, that runs from New Haven to Greenwich and also includes publications in Danbury, Middletown as well as Connecticut Magazine and a bunch of weeklies. Those properties include daily print publications with leaky paid circulation. News gathering is expensive, paper is pricey, printing presses require maintenance. How long will they last in that format?

An examination of the paid home delivery numbers shows a massive circulation drop in five years. In the most recent one year another 4,000 drop. In the latest fourth quarter report available (see graphic at top of article compared to one above) the drop is another 1,000-plus.

Post circulation household:

So, what Bridgeport neighborhoods subscribe to the print edition of the paper? Largely the North End and Black Rock, according to the stats above. It’s death valley on the East Side, South End and East End.

Suburban circulation is the paper’s strength, but even there it’s waning dramatically.

A regular OIB reader who asked that his name be withheld, shared his thoughts about the drop in circulation:

Lennie, there are numerous reasons for the drop off. Here are some–numerous missed deliveries, wet papers constantly, refusal to double bag and tie off so the paper gets wet, dealing with the phone people to register a complaint and listening to the false representation that a copy of the paper will be delivered by noon (that never happens) and the best of all is the note from the delivery person telling the subscriber not to complain when the paper isn’t delivered since it costs the person who is supposed to deliver the paper $2, it was suggested we call this person and if there were extras perhaps one would be delivered. Oh don’t forget we are supposed to pay for this. You know when I was a federal prosecutor I convicted people for this type of fraud.



  1. I am this close >< to canceling my subscription to the CT Post. Why you ask?? I have the Post delivered 2 days a week – Thursdays and Sundays. the Thursday edition is just barely 2 sections, the Sunday edition maybe 4 – and the circulars are just barely there. the 8 week subscription costs $43.95

    I remember the days when the CT Post was the Bridgeport Telegram in the morning and the Bridgeport Post in the afternoon. the weekday editions were more than 2 sections. the Sunday edition was 6. and what was reported in the Telegram and Post was *news* – not a rehash of what I heard on the 6 pm news the night before

  2. Not surprising,the Connecticut post along with every other newspaper in the country has given the middle Finger to half of the population. Basically ignoring the views of Republicans/conservatives . Continually write about pro democratic issues ,pro immigration and every other Liberal issue. Get what you deserve. Bye bye 👋

  3. This backs up my claim that 3/4 of Bpt taxpayers have no clue what Joe/Mario are doing to our city.Hardly anyone physically buys the paper anymore,and unless you’re willing to pay,which most people won’t/can’t do,the digital edition of the daily paper is useless,keeping most of our residents in the dark,just the way Joe wants it..

  4. There are so many news sources now, that it just isn’t worth the money for a large percentage of the population to subscribe for a paid edition of a newspaper… Newspapers/the media will have to get creative — conventionally and digitally — to survive… Even large organizations, such as Hearst, which currently have little special to offer, especially on the local level, to cities such as Bridgeport… I for one, would love to speak to Hearst executives on why I’m currently considering the wholesale cancellation of my Connecticut Post subscription… I pay $158 for a two-month renewal… For what I’m seeing in the paper that is truly useful or meaningful for me, it is hardly worth it anymore — especially since they moved out of Bridgeport… So; I’m close to canceling — which I probably would have done already, were it not for my indoor cats… I’ll need a good reason, pretty soon, to think in terms of keeping my subscription…

  5. Hello Neighbor,
    Stop by at a public speaking session of the City Council generally on 1st and 3d Monday of most months around 6:30. A chance to listen to or deliver 3 minutes of comment to City Council members who are present (and to leave a public record electronically for them and for the City Clerk office who maintain archives).
    One city businessman who often addresses topics of public safety and anti-gun violence message is Clive Nicholson. We recently addressed the subject of the Greene Homes from a public viewpoint and collaborated on this paper. (We sent it to the CT Post and to OIB but it did not tickle their fancy or seem adequately newsworthy perhaps. No response from those sites so since it kind of fits in with news that is not pulled together in a comprehensive fashion but becomes actual “news” to the public after the Mayor presents an idea and some folks feel it’s a done deal. How many other folks have a stake, a responsibility, live here and pay taxes of all kinds to get appropriate funding who are currently out of the loop; meeting or not; discussing and reporting; participating in active governance? Time will tell;

    Bridgeport: Fate of Greene Homes? What say the Residents?
    Enough stories have circulated in recent years about one of the Park City Community properties, the Greene Homes, located on the shoulders of the Hollow, no more than two blocks from the Police Department HQ yet often the site of drug traffic, gang activity and homicide.

    Who speaks for the people living at the Greene Homes, one of the multiple housing units managed by Park City Communities where folks live?
    • Is it the Acting Executive Director of Park City Communities (PCC) who for three years or more continues to reside out of the region and away from his contractual responsibilities?
    • Is it one or more of the Board members of PCC who meet regularly and are local stewards of all PCC properties and programs including Section 8 vouchers? What do meeting minutes indicate?
    • Is it a HUD employee in Hartford, Boston or Washington who can and will indicate a likely track for future development for PCC properties in the face of numerous difficult issues?
    • Is it a City of Bridgeport employee like Mayor Ganim who comes out of his office to issue a commentary on tearing down the structures, absent the type of background planning and assessment material that would be provided if serious purpose was intended? Serious purpose would acknowledge the serious fiscal realities of such a move and would reference other projects in the City seemingly started at an earlier time, but now stuck with no next reporting date in sight?
    • Is it a credible advisor who has looked at recent annual budgets of PCC, found the details to be current, balanced and fair, and advised on funds due to US Department of Justice in court case lost by PCC due to failure to offer “reasonable accommodations” to numerous residents in the City?
    • Are there multiple residents of Greene Homes who have lived at the property, known to other residents, and are willing to serve if elected a body representing residents that meets regularly, and works with City and PCC personnel, as an “active board”, as required by HUD?

    Would tenants prefer renovation of the property to become a safe and secure “gated community” offering 24/7 automated services for cars, residents and screening for visitors and as well as ‘working elevators’? Where is such a discussion happening these days?
    John Marshall Lee and Clyde Nicholson March 6, 2020


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