In what it calls "an admittedly awkward, after-the-fact effort in filling the gap," the Independent has laid out the rest of the story on the contract dispute between editor-in-chief and minority owner Marianne Partridge and publisher and majority owner Randy Campbell. "What we failed to cover ... were the arguments that Campbell and his attorneys provided in their responding papers," news editor Nick Welch writes. "As such, The Independent's coverage of its own internal struggle has been somewhat one-sided." To rectify the situation, the paper will not be covering the dispute in a traditional way as it moves along; instead, it will present readers with links to the relevant court documents themselves (this latest story includes 13 legal documents the case has produced to date).

Continue ReadingMore on the Legal Battle at the Santa Barbara Independent

Judge Denise deBellefeuille has granted an injunction sought by Independent co-owner and editor-in-chief Marianne Partridge in her contract dispute over the paper's sale with publisher and majority owner Randy Campbell. The injunction effectively bars Campbell from selling or distributing his shares of the Independent until the conflict with Partridge over the sale of his shares is finally resolved, the paper reports.

Continue ReadingJudge Grants Injunction Sought by Santa Barbara Independent Editor

Editor-in-chief Marianne Partridge has sued publisher Randy Campbell in Santa Barbara County Superior Court for breach of contract in a legal dispute that Independent reporter Nick Welsh says "could have major ramifications for the ownership structure" of the paper. Partridge, a minority shareholder, claims that Campbell -- who owns 51 percent of the company -- is in violation of contract language that requires him to offer to sell his stock to Partridge or one of the other two minority owners before selling to anyone else. The dispute stems from Campbell's apparent desire to sell his share of the Independent to Valley Printers, which prints the paper and is owned by Southland Publishing, the parent company of four Southern California AAN member papers.

Continue ReadingSanta Barbara Independent Editor Sues Publisher Over Proposed Sale

Editor & Publisher has recognized the Santa Barbara Independent as one of 10 newspapers of note, in their annual "10 That Do It Right" feature. The Independent is the only AAN member on this year's list (the Bay Guardian made the cut last year), which showcases newspapers in the US that are "performing in one particular aspect -- from marketing to online video -- that merits consideration and maybe even emulation by their peers." E&P notes that the Independent has become the top source for local news in town by capitalizing on turmoil at the daily Santa Barbara News-Press and by focusing on its website. "When you talk about the paper of record, you really are assuming that's the paper that has the institutional memory," Indy editor-in-chief Marianne Partridge says. "The fact is, it's our paper that has all the institutional memory."

Continue ReadingSanta Barbara Named One of ’10 That Do it Right’ by E&P