This week's edition of the Seattle Weekly will be the last printing of the 42-year-old newspaper, according to Crosscut. It will move to a "web only" format. The newspaper's owner gutted the weekly's staff and closed their offices in Oct. 2017 in a pivot to what Mark Baumgarten, the paper's former editor-in-chief, called a "community news weekly."
Crosscut didn't identify their source for the announcement in their original breaking story but it's not too surprising the non-profit blog had the scoop: Baumgarten is now an editor at Crosscut and Seattle Weekly was founded by David Brewster, the same person who started Crosscut.
The end of the Weekly, even in this "forcibly lobotomized" state, is a loss for Seattle's print media landscape. Ten years ago, Seattle had two fully staffed weekly newspapers and two daily newspapers, now we have just one daily newspaper and The Stranger, which went to bi-weekly printing in late 2017. It brings none of us in this office joy to see the Weekly die for reasons best summarized by former Stranger writer Sean Nelson when he wrote about the Weekly's gutting last year:
As the city has continued to expand, Seattle media has remained a small, ever-diminishing pond. Many excellent writers, editors, and designers have worked at both papers at one time or another. And given the amount of cultural activity available to cover here, it was interesting, comforting, and useful to see where the two Seattle's reflected in the two papers overlapped and diverged.
Only a handful of staff writers remained after Sound Publishing, the paper's owner, gutted the newspaper. The small staff has continued to break stories and write thoughtful arts coverage even as the paper shrank to less than 10 pages in some recent editions. Three staff members have been let go, according to Crosscut. We hope they find new work soon—Seattle needs them.