After publishing the South End News and Bay Windows since 2003, owners Sue O’Connell and Jeff Coakley announced late last week they were putting the two publications up for sale after 18 years.
The South End News began publication in 1980, and at one time had nine full-time staff and several part-time staff, according to founder Alison Barnet (see accompanying article).
“In these times of change, we invite one more,” the owners wrote. “After publishing Bay Windows and South End News for 18 years, we are putting both publications up for sale. The business of local news has changed in the two decades we’ve owned both papers. But the news and its importance to the community has not. That is why we are inviting community leaders, business owners, nonprofits, educational institutions and others to consider purchasing Bay Windows and South End News, either separately or together. We are committed to thinking creatively and working with potential buyers to provide an equitable path to ownership.”
O’Connell and Coakley wrote that they are taking all suitors and all kinds of different business ideas and would be flexible in order to keep the publications going. They said they bought the papers in 2003 because they thought it would be fun, and both said it was.
“Over the past two decades, we have met business owners, nonprofit leaders, artists, activists, chefs, politicians, city employees and community members,” they wrote. “It has been the experience of a lifetime. Now it is someone else’s turn.”
Bay Windows was the primary source of news and information related to the political, legal and public opinion battles being waged to bring marriage equality to the state, they said, after the purchased it. Previously, it had served the same role as a source of information about AIDS. Since its founding, they wrote, Bay Windows has been all news relevant to the LGBTQ community.
The South End News has played the same role, they said, helping to shape a community that has changed greatly in the last 41 years.