The print circulation numbers aren’t the only ones to look at skeptically. Rebecca Theim, a former Picayune reporter who started ThirtyDASHThirty last summer to help laid off Picayune employees, points out to me in an email that the Web traffic numbers Mathews announced don’t match up with ones Amoss published last month in advance of a 60 Minutes piece on the paper.

Amoss wrote that there 41 million visitors last year to, which works out to 3.4 million a month. But Mathews says, according to Poynter, that’s what the site got in 2011: had 3.4 million unique visitors a month in 2011. In 2012, it had 4.2 million.

I emailed both Amoss and Mathews yesterday for comment and will update if I hear back.


Ryan Chittum is a former Wall Street Journal reporter, and deputy editor of The Audit, CJR's business section. If you see notable business journalism, give him a heads-up at