From The New York Times

While workers at many newspapers owned by Advance Publications have tried to brace themselves for what seems to be the inevitable — layoffs and the end of a daily print product — reporters and editors at The Plain Dealer in Cleveland are fighting back in an unusual way: they are taking their case directly to the public.

The staff there has started a campaign to rally community support and to try to prevent cuts like the ones Advance has made in other cities. Using money provided by Local 1 of the Newspaper Guild and a grant from the Communications Workers of America, organizers have produced a television commercial, created a Facebook pagethat has attracted nearly 4,000 “likes” and started a petition that has nearly 6,000 signatures so far. They have also enlisted some celebrities, like the “Hot in Cleveland” star Valerie Bertinelli, to support their cause.

“We’ve been surprised and gratified and really humbled by the amount of response we’ve gotten,” said John Mangels, a science writer for the paper who is involved in the organizing efforts.

It is not clear whether these measures will be enough to preserve The Plain Dealer as a daily newspaper. According to the Alliance for Audited Media, the paper’s Monday through Friday circulation declined 19 percent, to 293,139 from 363,750, over the last decade.

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