By Robert Haugh
There’s been a lot of changes in local journalism recently.
The Mercury News, the most widely read publication in the area — including Santa Clara — has made the most personnel changes. Two long-time columnists retired: Mark Purdy won’t be in the sport pages any more and Scott Herhold won’t be in the local section.
Recently, the Merc’s Ramona Giwargis, publicly announced that she had been fired and is suing her paper. Rumors are that she might have been pushed out over a story she was working on about San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo and Silicon Valley Leadership Group CEO Carl Guardino.
If the rumor is true, it must have been juicy.
Giwargis just announced on Twitter that she’ll be moving to Nevada to work for the Las Vegas Review-Journal covering state politics.
As many already know, I was terminated from the Mercury News in Dec. I can’t say more on instruction of counsel. But I’m happy to announce that I’ve accepted a new job at the Las Vegas Review-Journal covering state politics. Thank you all for your support. It’s meant a lot to me.
— Ramona Giwargis (@RamonaGiwargis) January 7, 2018
At Metro/San Jose Inside.com, Josh Koehn announced recently that he’ll be leaving for the San Francisco Chronicle.
On the personal news beat: I’m excited to report that I’ll be joining the San Francisco Chronicle. Cannot say thank you enough to colleagues and readers of Metro and San Jose Inside.
— Josh Koehn (@Josh_Koehn) January 4, 2018
Last year, Nate Donato-Weinstein left the Silicon Valley Business Journal for a public sector job.
Combined, these reporters represent a lot of journalistic talent and institutional memory. They’ll all be missed.
I know how important local reporting is to a community. I wrote for the Santa Clara Weekly for 10 years. I started Santa Clara News Online over a year ago because I kept hearing that there was a real need for good and accurate news about Santa Clara. A lot of residents believe that the Mercury News rarely covers the Mission City and when they do, they get major stories wrong and their editorials show a real double standard. They don’t seem to understand Santa Clara or other cities not named San Jose. Complaints about the Santa Clara Weekly are different. Residents think the writing is poor and coverage is biased.
So, I’ll keep writing about Santa Clara because I know a community as good as the Mission City deserves news and information from multiple sources whether it’s read online, or in print, or heard or seen on the air.
Finally, I hope that the new generation of reporters and editorial writers will begin to understand the great changes happening in Santa Clara. It started when the 49ers wanted to build the stadium and become the biggest political force in the city.
It changed when former Mayor Jamie Matthews suddenly resigned after the Super Bowl in 2016 and Mayor Lisa Gillmor took over. Since then, City Hall and Santa Clara residents have pushed back against the team and won almost every battle to protect our general fund and our neighborhoods.
It’s a good story and deserves to be covered accurately and well. We try to do it here on Santa Clara News Online. We hope others will, too.