In an newsletter announcement today, the team behind the “Bring Back the Bay Guardian” campaign announced that it had raised enough funds to secure its 50-year archives and begin relaunching major features. The Bay Guardian ceased operations in October 2014, when corporate owner Black Press deemed it financially unfeasible.


The progressive news source’s two-month Indiegogo campaign, launched by former Bay Guardian editors and publishers (including this writer and 48 Hills editor Tim Redmond), raised $28,386 from 253 individual donors. When combined with outside and matching donations, the team determined there was enough money to secure the archives and relaunch major Guardian features like Best of the Bay, the Clean Slate election endorsement guide, and the annual GOLDIES arts awards.

For now the Guardian will be an online entity, although the team hopes to print and distribute some major features. The Guardian is operated by the 501(c)(4) non-profit San Francisco Center for Newspaper Preservation. More information on the campaign and the relaunch can be found here. The full newsletter text is below:

Dear Guardian Readers,

WE DID IT! Thanks to our generous IndieGogo campaign supporters and matching donors, we raised enough to BRING BACK THE BAY GUARDIAN! Thank you to everyone who is helping keep Bay Area journalism local, independent, alternative, and lively!

Our next steps: Build out a new Bay Guardian website, secure a better storage space for our 50-year archive, and launch voting for the one-and-only Bay Guardian BEST OF THE BAY. We’ll also be working on opinion pieces, election endorsements, and in-depth reporting, along with our allies at 48 Hills.

You can still contribute by mail!

SF Center for Newspaper Preservation
176 Winfield
San Francisco, CA 94110

THANK YOU AGAIN. We’re very excited to enter this next chapter of Bay Guardian history.

— Tim and Marke


  • Greg

    If “The Guardian is operated by the 501(c)(4) non-profit” how will it be able to make electoral endorsements without losing its favorable tax status?

    Doesn’t that preferable tax treatment critically inhibit The Guardian’s legendary influence during election campaigns?

    • 501(c)(4)s can make endorsements.

  • Sara

    I’m not sure, but newspaper endorsements matter for two main reasons: one, their knowledge of the issues comes from regular investigation, interaction, and analysis of news-worthy events. Second, their opinions are important because their editorial pages have an ON-GOING dialogue with the public, are held accountable through a feedback process via letters to the editor the public is able to access, and the trust that competition with other papers pushes reporters/editors to be as objective and well-versed as possible.

    I am thrilled that the Guardian is back and have donated to 48 Hills, but am a little wary of selective publishing of only endorsement issues. The process in the past for their endorsements, especially for down-ticket races, was not transparent, public, or necessarily fair (there weren’t interviews or the SFBG already had a favorite…). The public should know about your process and motivations if the public is going to be asked to trust you

    I just think one-a-year endorsements seems inappropriate

    • Hi Sara, thanks for your feedback. According to the newsletter announcement above, the Guardian is hoping to supplement both election endorsement issues this year, both the primary and the general, with lively opinion pieces. As for transparency, here is the Guardian’s 2014 “Listen to the Guardian’s endorsement interviews” ( and “Why and how we endorsed who and what we did” (
      And as I’m sure any visitor to the website can attest, there was much ongoing debate and communication in the comments section.

      • Sara

        Thanks for those links – I guess I had heard in 2014 that the Guardian didn’t interview or even send a questionnaire to down-ballot candidates.

  • Y.

    First of all, congratulations! Second, have you found a home for the old issues and other paper archives?

    • Marke responding here: Thanks — now that we’ve concluded the this round of fundraising, we can finally concentrate on our goals! Stay tuned.

  • babluemeanie

    Congratulations! Hope springs eternal. Thanks for all your work.

  • Mark B. are you going to be able to do anything about the comments you pompously eradicated?