SF Bay Guardian shutters after 48 years

October 15, 2014
Steven T. Jones

Steven T. Jones

One of the West’s first and most widely-known alternative newspapers, the San Francisco Bay Guardian, closed its doors Tuesday. Editor Steven T. Jones, a former star reporter for San Luis Obispo’s New Times, said the announcement took his entire staff by surprise and that today’s will be the last issue. (San Francisco Chronicle)

The newspaper was founded in 1966 by Bruce Brugmann and his wife, Jean Dibble, and enjoyed nearly a half-century of progressive successes in a city with a strong liberal leaning.

The San Francisco Media Company bought the Bay Guardian in 2012. Brugmann had been laying off employees at the time.  Analysts said the Bay Guardian’s readers, like those of newspapers nationwide, have been migrating to online sources and social media for their news.

Jones jokingly said the paper is available for “fire-sale” prices.


Jorge Estrada

Different Times would be a good name for the next media that will go bust.


In 1972 worked for the old BG that Bruce and his wife, Jean, started in the late 60’s. A great muckraking ethic that Lincoln Steffens would have been proud of.

The BG attacked the cronyism deals between the city of San Francisco and the all powerful real estate interests. They fought the Manhattanization of SF and the redevelopment agency that was tearing down and not rebuilding.

The death of the old BG came with the sweetheart federal law called the “Failing Newspaper Act” which allowed the established newspapers to consolidate operations as a semi monopoly thanks to bought off politicians. Bruce sued and had to settle for around $750K in order to survive. That’s when they had to alter their coverage and allow sex classifieds.

Yeah, they fell into the new progressive crap over the last 20 years but they still remained a thorn in the side of much of the Bay Area politics.

We need lots of alternate opinions (geez I even listen to Rush and KPRL now that I’ve moved down here. )

CCN, keep up the BG tradition!

the guy paso

The market has spoken, maybe the Trib will listen


When people could post online personal ads, they probably lost a lot of readers. Besides, the Chronicle is liberal enough to meet the needs of most libs.


I could blame the fact that this leftist rag was a progressive tool of the liberal establishment, but newspapers as a whole are going the way of the horse-drawn buggy. It’s not a loss, however rather a result of news no longer being written, and instead opinion sections becoming the front page. Sad really.


The reporting of Steven Jones is definitely a loss. He was a true investigative reporter

when he worked for New Times; one of the best ever.

I believe he continued that notable writing at the Guardian and treated all political

leanings with equal circumspect.