Metro Newspapers

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Metro Newspapers
Founded 1985
Headquarters San Jose, California, United States
Products Alternative newspapers

Metro Newspapers also known as Metro Publishing is an American newspaper company based in San Jose, California. It publishes four free alternative weekly newspapers in Northern California: Metro Silicon Valley, Good Times, the Pacific Sun and the North Bay Bohemian; and three community newspapers: the Gilroy Dispatch, the Hollister Free Lance and the Morgan Hill Times. Together, the publications reach a weekly audience of about half a million people, according to The Media Audit.

The publications are free-distribution, tabloid-sized newspapers emphasizing news and analysis, local coverage and in-depth coverage of arts, culture and entertainment. Its Boulevards subsidiary operates city guides on the web internationally, under such URLs as and

Founded in 1985, the Metro weekly began celebrating its 25th year starting in March 2009,[1] making it the most established free weekly in the South Bay Area of Northern California. It was one of the first newspapers to publish Matt Groening's Life in Hell and Rob Brezsny's Real Astrology. The company is operated by its founder and longtime executive editor, Dan Pulcrano. [2]

Metro Santa Cruz began publishing in 1994. The same year, Metro Newspapers purchased the Sonoma County Independent, which, in October 2000, expanded its distribution to cover Napa and Marin counties and is now published under the North Bay Bohemian flag. In March 2009, on the publication's 15th anniversary, Metro Santa Cruz was renamed Santa Cruz Weekly. In March 2014, Metro Newspapers acquired Good Times, the Gilroy Dispatch, the Hollister Free Lance and the Morgan Hill Times, and merged Good Times and the Santa Cruz Weekly.[3] In 2015, Metro acquired the Pacific Sun; the Bohemian withdrew from Marin County.[4][5]

Silicon Valley Community Newspapers[edit]

Metro developed a group of weekly community newspapers, including the Los Gatos Weekly-Times, Saratoga News, Campbell Reporter, Willow Glen Resident and Sunnyvale Sun. Under Metro's ownership, the group won numerous awards, including the California Newspaper Publishers Association's "General Excellence" award in its Better Newspapers Contest. On December 17, 2001, David Cohen, a co-founder of Metro, bought the group, which at the time included six publications and left to run Silicon Valley Community Newspapers as an independent company. Cohen sold it four years later to Knight Ridder which sold the group to McClatchy Corp. McClatchy immediately resold SVCN to Dean Singleton's MediaNews Group. [6] In 2014, Bay Area News Group marketing director Erika Brown announced that the newspapers would be distributed to subscribers of the Mercury News, rather than generally to homes in the community. [7]

Early online player[edit]

Metro was an early participant in the online publishing revolution, in 1993 launching the Livewire online service, one of the first online efforts by a non-daily newspaper publisher. The service offered free email accounts, online commerce, chats, posting forums, and online articles.

Virtual Valley, a similar service with an emphasis on covering Silicon Valley communities, was launched the following year and helped put the city governments of San Jose, Milpitas and Los Gatos online. Also in 1994, Metro established Boulevards, a network of web sites, each covering a major U.S. metropolitan area, that pre-dated Citysearch and Microsoft's short-lived "Sidewalk" service.

In 1995, Metro launched the online version of the newspaper on the Web under the brand Metroactive. This now includes all three papers and includes a downloadable edition in PDF format.


Metroactive has received several awards[8] for its work, including:


  1. ^ Dan Pulcrano, "Twenty-Four and Counting," Metro Silicon Valley March 4–10, 2009, p. 06,
  2. ^ Stoll, Michael (26 September 2013). "C2SV: The Music and Technology Festival of Silicon Valley". Liquid Brand Exchange. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  3. ^ Metro Newspapers buys weeklies in Santa Cruz, Gilroy, Morgan Hill and Hollister
  4. ^ Zaragoza, Jason (2015-05-06). "Metro Newspapers Acquires Pacific Sun". Retrieved 2015-05-17. 
  5. ^ Holbrook, Stett (2015-05-13). "The 'Sun' Also Rises". North Bay Bohemian. Retrieved 2015-05-17. 
  6. ^ Stoll, Michael (14 March 2006). "Knight Ridder breakup may create unprecedented concentration of ownership in Bay Area newspapers". Grade the News. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  7. ^ "Wake of the Weeklies". San Jose Inside. Metro Newspapers. 12 February 2006. Retrieved 28 May 2014. 
  8. ^ Awards, Metroactive's web awards, Metro Publishing Inc. Maintained by Boulevards New Media.
  9. ^ "". Retrieved 2011-12-01. 

External links[edit]