Help us keep raising hell


EDITORIAL The last couple years have been some of the most difficult and precarious in the Guardian's 47 years of printing the news and raising hell in San Francisco. We've been struggling to survive and thrive, both the newspaper and the larger progressive political and alternative arts communities the Guardian is a part of, at a moment when this city needs us more than ever.

But the good news is that people are awakening to what has been lost as our resources have waned. We see it in the resurgent movements against evictions and gentrification and for better transit and bike lanes, in a rare referendum campaign challenging the 8 Washington project and its lies, in the lively online discussions we facilitate, and in the community support that the Guardian and other nascent progressive media projects are receiving.

Most people don't trust the mainstream political, economic, and media institutions to understand or explain what's happening to San Francisco and the greater Bay Area. Technology has created an explosion of new media outlets, but it's come at the price of common narratives and gathering places where we can join together, discuss the issues, and then assert our collective will.

This is where the Guardian comes in, and it's why we must find the way to grow through these tough years and regain our standing as the premier forum for discussing and promoting San Francisco's values and needs. And for that, we need your help and support.

In some ways, it's a situation similar to when Bruce B. Brugmann and Jean Dibble started the Bay Guardian in October 1966, when San Francisco was at the epicenter of social movements and technological innovation that were challenging entrenched economic interests and the inertia of the status quo.

The Guardian gave voice to new ideas about human rights and responsibilities, sexuality and identity, art and expression, diversity and tolerance, and many of the other issues and values that have animated San Francisco for the last half-century. Along with papers such as the Village Voice, Boston Phoenix, and Chicago Reader, the Guardian helped create the model for alternative newsweeklies that came to proliferate in every major US city, expanding the political and cultural dialogue in the country.

But that model is faltering. The Phoenix, which was founded the same year as the Guardian, closed its doors earlier this year, falling victim to the same economic pressures that are plaguing the entire newspaper industry. And the Voice soldiers on as a relatively apolitical corporate clone of its former feisty self after being bought out by a Phoenix-based chain driven by the kind of bottom-line Wall Street values that alt-weeklies were originally launched to oppose.

Regular readers of the Guardian know how we've fought for our independence and sustainability over the last year (see "On Guard," June 19, and "New Guardian leadership wants your input," July 23), and that we've approached it in a way that was consistent with our values on transparency, fearless truth-telling, and partnership with our progressive community.

And now, on the Guardian's anniversary, we are recommitting to the mission stated on our masthead, "to print the news and raise hell," while updating that mission for the digital age in myriad ways, some of which we'll be announcing soon. This region is at a crossroads, choosing between greedy, myopic elitism and egalitarian sustainability, and we need strong media voices like the Guardian to clarify that choice.


Posted by troll barrier on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 4:04 pm

i don't mind

i don't mind....

Posted by dda on Oct. 18, 2013 @ 11:10 am

"the lively online discussions we facilitate"

Nothing that a few more troll barriers can't solve!

Posted by Reality barrier! on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 7:58 am

Better a troll barrier to keep discussion focused on the issues instead of leaving unchecked trolls who throw verbal poo on discussions.

Posted by Peter on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 10:31 am

It's like a barrier then goads the trolls into posting beyond the barrier just to prove that they are effective.

Plus they make every thread twice as long, making it less readable for everyone.

Waste of time.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 11:02 am

this is simply a troll barrier

it is a signpost to indicate to the reader that other anonymous posters on this thread are beginning to purposely diminish the conversation into reactionary hyperbole and/or petty, mean spirited, personal attacks and irrelevant bickering

the barrier is put in place to signal that there is probably little point in reading more replies in the thread past this point

proceed at your own risk

Posted by troll barrier on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 11:38 am

Here's a suggestion. If you're going to screen the comments, edit out the "troll barrier" posts. I hardly read your website anymore as half the comments are "troll barrier" posts.

Posted by The Commish on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 1:21 pm

that he is only trying to suppress trolling but he has become the biggest troll here. As well as taking far more bandwidth than any other poster.

I believe that the SFBG has an open policy towards a diversity of political views, and welcomes critical posts from different ideological viewpoints. But kneejerk repetition of the same idiocy smacks of a psychotic character that the SFBG could well do without.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 1:29 pm

are those which are on the run

you confirm that the barriers are working by crying out against them like spoiled fat children

who can't get at their favorite cake

Posted by racer x on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 2:17 pm

If anything, they sometimes male me post more just to show how ineffective they are.

You claimed that we would all quickly go away, and yet after weeks of this nonsense, you have achieved nothing.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 2:41 pm

i'll engage in it

the barriers are clearly working

they have replaced and shortened endless streams of joke-ass bitch sessions between trolls like you, and the naive oafs who constantly reply to people like you

thereby breaking the chain of those irritating threads and minimizing them *dramatically*

so yes, there are a *lot* of troll barriers, but not nearly as many as the avalanches of useless and crass troll thread bullshit comments that used to plague this site

and furthermore, a major difference with the barriers is that when a reader sees one, they know full well there is no reason to click on it or read it, so it is far less an interruption to their reading experience than constant irritating and asinine troll comments which are not always apparent before clicking and reading, and which have *definitely* decreased in volume since i and others started deploying these barriers

is this perfect?

hell no

but it is a lot better that the literary feces that used to plaster the walls of this site, and until the SFBG institutes a registration system, its the best protection we've got

Posted by racer x on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 3:05 pm

And even if the threads were smaller, doesn't that just show that you have driven out many people who previously contributed and now no longer see the point.

What you really want to do is here is try and control content, rather than discuss, and that is not your job - it's SFBG's job to do moderation.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 3:21 pm

ridiculously calling for stats that you know don't exist

were done now little piggy

Posted by racer x on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 3:35 pm

Now you admit that you have no figures at all.

Why am I not shocked?

Posted by Guest on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 3:48 pm

Besides the sheer repetition, is that so often they follow a post that has absolutely no rancor or ridicule or excessive hyperbole.

I always laugh when someone just posts something that respectfully disagrees with the progressive line and therefore Troll Barrier has to warn everyone that alternative perspectives are being presented.


Posted by Guest on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 3:08 pm

try and suppress a response.

Doesn't work, obviously.

Posted by Guest on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 3:22 pm

little piggy

Posted by troll barrier on Oct. 09, 2013 @ 3:24 pm
Posted by Guest on Oct. 14, 2013 @ 3:17 pm

Has Bruce finally abandoned the cause?

Posted by Guest on Oct. 17, 2013 @ 12:38 pm

The SF Weekly was 64 pages this week. The Guardian was only 40.

Are you worried that your new Canadian owner is steering all resources toward your sister publication?

Posted by Guest on Nov. 29, 2013 @ 8:29 pm

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