Although we're shocked, we weren't surprised to read the news this evening that the San Francisco Bay Guardian was pretty damn close to selling out to the San Francisco Examiner, considering rumors of a pending sale had already hit the blogosphere last week.
A sale became even more of a reality this afternoon when the San Francisco Business Times reported that the Guardian is in contract to sell its home for $6.5 million to major developer Union Property Capital
Not long after that news broke, the Guardian announced on its website that co-publishers Bruce Brugmann and Jean Dibble "are stepping down from day-to-day operations at the paper, and the transition is "connected to ongoing exclusive negotiations with a subsidiary of The SF Newspaper Company LLC to purchase all assets related to the the Guardian publishing operations." The SF Newspaper Company also owns and publishes the San Francisco Examiner.
We talked to Todd Vogt, the publisher of the Examiner, who told us that both parties expect a deal to close "within the next few weeks."
Assuming a deal is signed, what does this mean for the left-leaning Guardian and its readers? Vogt says you won't even notice a change: The editorial staff will remain intact and Brugmann will continue his "Bruce Blog," which we guess means that Ross Mirkarimi will continue to be championed.
As for the paper's politics, the seemingly impossible is about to happen: The paper will be filled with even more crusading prose.
"If anything, it will be progressively more progressive," Vogt assured us. "It's time to update the paper to reflect the community."
Follow us on Twitter at @TheSnitchSF and @SFWeekly