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About Us

Since 1986, The Independent has been required reading for the South Coast's active & sophisticated population. The Independent reaches more than 135,000 readers in Santa Barbara County each Thursday with in-depth news reporting, the most extensive calendar of local events, and the best arts and entertainment coverage in the region.

Although we have had a website since 1998, it wasn't until April, 2007 that we began our community news, arts, and entertainment portal, independent.com. Providing a thorough and up to date site for all things Santa Barbara, independent.com immediately became the area's most visited community website. Santa Barbara has a daily news site, and a place for the community to connect.

In 2008 we were recognized as the Best Weekly Newspaper website in the United States, in a national contest sponsored by Editor & Publisher magazine. In the meantime, our online audience has grown to be the largest in Santa Barbara county, twice as large as our nearest news competitor. But don't take our word for it -- here's a link to current online traffic rating services.

Our newspaper also was singled out in 2008 as one of "10 That Do It Right," of newspapers leading in innovation and adaptation, in another Editor & Publisher recognition.

The Independent was created from the merger of the Santa Barbara News & Review, a weekly paper consisting of politics and commentary founded in 1973, and The Weekly, an arts and entertainment publication with extensive listings. The merger created a unique voice for independent writers, critics, and involved citizens, and Santa Barbara go-to community resource for what-to-do.

The Santa Barbara Independent is a true community newspaper with a market penetration higher than almost every other "alternative" weekly in the country. Our audited circulation of 40,000 copies exceeds the daily paper and any other publication in Santa Barbara County.

Business size

26-100 employees


Commercial presence