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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

VT Guardian Shutting Down

This Just In from a "reliable source" who got it from the Vermont Guardian's Shay Totten:

"I'm sending this note out to some close friends and associates before I
make it official on the website this afternoon.  I'm enclosing the
press release I will post from the Guardian, and the one that Chelsea
Green is releasing today as well.

"It's been great to work with and collaborate with many of you on this
list, and I'll still be in Vermont working away in indy publishing, so
I won't be far or unreachable by e-mail or cell phone (324-XXXX * see footnote below).

"I want to thank everyone for helping to make the Guardian such a great
asset in the media landscape while it lasted. Perhaps it can be
resurrected by some enterprising young journalists with more energy
than I have to give anymore, but we'll see. As you'll notice, the
website will remain active, though not actively posted to, for an
indefinite amount of time.

Vermont Guardian Editor/Publisher put that out to close friends within the last hour.

The accompanying press release stated:

This week's issue will be the paper's last, and will largely be
comprised of a "best of" retrospective of some of the most important
stories the paper published in its two-and-a-half year run, Totten
said. The Guardian's first weekly print edition hit the streets in
September 2004, and its circulation topped 10,000 readers statewide.

Au revoir, Vt Guardian.



*** Received from Mr. Totten on Wednesday afternoon:

Shay_totten "Just wonder if you can take down my phone number (a private cell phone number) from the website on Peter's blog. That e-mail went out to a group of friends and colleagues whom I don't mind having it, but it's not for general consumption."

Gee whiz! Mine's in the fricken' phonebook!

Didn't think you'd want to be 'hard to reach' by interested, concerned parties.

Oh, well. Your wish?

My command!

- PF


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Am deeply saddened to hear that bit of news. Shay Totten gave an excellent effort during its run. The Vermont Guardian will be missed.


Have just checked and the VG's article indicates (here):


Totten will be the new editorial director of Chelsea Green Publishing in White River Junction. The job title encompasses the existing editor-in-chief role, and has been expanded to include the oversight and development of multimedia tools and online content. [...].

Read the related article: Chelsea Green Publishing hires new editor, plans online content expansion.

Matt Lyon

Best of luck to Shay in his new gig! He's a talented reporter and the Guardian will be missed.

Matt Lyon

Best of luck to Shay in his new gig! He's a talented reporter and the Guardian will be missed.


Great. One of the few Vermont reporters with any gonads, and now he's calling it quits. First Sneyd, now Shay. Is there anyone out there to fill the print void? I don't think so. Maybe it's time for labor, the enviros and the peaceniks to pool their resources and start publishing a new rag.


The Vermont ultra left doesn't need another media outlet. They already entirely dominate this state. A little more balance would be in order, actually.

And with all respect to Mr. Totten, who is a nice guy, geezum, is it possible that the Guardian may have sealed its own eventual fate with its exceedingly narrow, ultra left wing focus? A focus that alienated people like me who didn't favor, say, an immediate and complete shutdown of Vermont Yankee? IMHO, I found the Guardian to be little more than the "Weekly Anti-Yankee Alert." Even in crazy left wing Vermont, maybe the paper was so far Left that there wasn't enough of a reliable constituency or readership or advertising sponsorship population to support it? When you appear antagonistic to business (again, IMHO), why should they advertise in your paper? Especially when there are so few of them around, because we do our best to drive them out of the state? Or maybe the ultra left in Vermont didn't put its money where its mouth is and subscribe in sufficient numbers?


I dont think being "ultra-left" has anything to do with it. Being a start up newspaper in this day and age is an incredibly difficult thing. No matter what your political slant is, running and opearting a weekly newspaper is no longer a big money making venture and to do it in Vermont makes it's even harder.


Won't disagree that it's hard to run a business in Vermont -- hostile territory for business. Let's do something about that.

sandy ward

If anyone followed Trotten's work under Liz Ready at the Auditor of Accounts office, one would understand why his venture failed.


Why? Was he the one who exposed Liz the Frauditor's resume-packing? Or her shameless near-daily use of the Auditor's office as a soapbox for her own future political ambitions (following, of course, in the noble footsteps of Ed "where's the microphone?" Flanagan)? And what would that have to do with why his venture failed?

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