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Why SF Weekly Shutting Down is so Awful

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By now you’ve probably probably heard: SF Weekly is shutting down indefinitely.

When I first learned about it, I was somehow both shocked and unsurprised at the same time. Shocked because I can’t imagine San Francisco without an alt-weekly. Unsurprised because I know how broken the business of local, independent journalism is.

That’s why I’m writing to ask you to please join the Broke-Ass Stuart Patreon at $6 or above.

The shuttering of SF Weekly leaves a humungous gap in the local news ecosystem. Alt weeklies have always been the best places to learn about emerging artists and musicians, cool nightlife, new restaurants, and funky stories about local people. But more importantly alt weeklies were the publications unafraid to ask questions the big newspapers waffled on and cover things the prudish mainstream media would never consider. At one point SF had two of them, now we have none.

When I tell people about Broke-Ass Stuart and they’ve never heard of it, I usually describe it as being like an alt weekly but solely online. That’s because, in a way, BAS has always been modeled after them: Speaking up for the little guy and having a good time while doing it. We also get to amplify voices that don’t always get heard, and give budding journalists a platform they wouldn’t normally have. To get an even better sense of the importance of alt weeklies, you can read Joe Eskenazi’s piece here and Peter-Astrid Kane’s piece here.

As you can imagine, if running this thing wasn’t hard enough before last year, the pandemic almost shut us down forever. Thankfully many of you stepped up and joined the BAS Patreon, single-handedly keeping BAS alive. I mean this in all seriousness, we came this close to shutting down.

It was then that I realized the only true path to Broke-Ass Stuart – or any indie media really – surviving in the longterm, is by reader support. Yes, our advertisers have begun trickling back in. And yes, we’ve been selling a few shirts and beer passports. But month in and month out, it’s the support of people like you who very literally allow us to publish 60+ articles a month, keeping a few hundred thousand people both informed and entertained.

So please become a member of the Broke-Ass Stuart Patreon at $6 or above, and help our team continue to deliver community focused journalism to everyone. Plus, depending on what tier you join, becoming a Patron gets you anything from random silly postcards from me to free merchandise from our store.

Thank you SO much. None of this is possible without you.

Sending you love & solidarity,

Stuart, Alex, and Team BAS

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Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Stuart Schuffman, aka Broke-Ass Stuart, is a travel writer, poet, TV host, activist, and general shit-stirrer. His website is one of the most influential arts & culture sites in the San Francisco Bay Area and his freelance writing has been featured in Lonely Planet, Conde Nast Traveler, The Bold Italic, and too many other outlets to remember. His weekly column, Broke-Ass City, appears every other Thursday in the San Francisco Examiner. Stuart’s writing has been translated into four languages. In 2011 Stuart created and hosted the travel show Young, Broke, and Beautiful on IFC and in 2015 he ran for Mayor of San Francisco and got nearly 20k votes.

He's been called "an Underground legend": SF Chronicle, "an SF cult hero":SF Bay Guardian, and "the chief of cheap": Time Out New York.