About Berkeleyside

Berkeleyside is Berkeley, California’s independently-owned local news site.

Launched in 2009, Berkeleyside was founded by three veteran journalists: Lance Knobel, Tracey Taylor and Frances Dinkelspiel. Emilie Raguso joined the reporting team in 2012, along with Natalie Orenstein and Sarah Han in 2017.

Berkeleyside is a local newspaper without the paper. It reports the news and covers the extraordinary diversity of people, issues, events, food and environment in this city of 120,000 people whose impact reaches far beyond the Bay Area.


A pioneer in the field of online local journalism, Berkeleyside benefits from its large community of engaged readers. In 2017, Berkeleyside has averaged more than 1 million pageviews, and more than 400,000 unique visitors, each month.

Berkeleyside was the winner of the Society of Professional Journalists’ Northern California Excellence in Journalism Award for Community Journalism in both 2013 and 2014. In 2015, we won Best Local Twitter Account in the East Bay from the East Bay Express. In 2016, we won an Excellence in Journalism Award from SPJ NorCal for our comprehensive coverage of homelessness in Berkeley.

Read our stories, follow us on Twitter and Instagram, become a fan on Facebook.

Learn about all the ways you can help support our work (most of them don’t cost a penny!).

uncharted logoBerkeleyside produces the annual Uncharted: The Berkeley Festival of Ideas. Uncharted was founded in 2013 as the Bay Area’s first ideas festival. It brings together some of the world’s great thinkers for two thrilling days of discussion, debate, and workshops designed to engage and inspire. Questions about the festival? Please email Uncharted program director Lance Knobel at lknobel@gmail.com.

b-the-changeBerkeleyside Inc. is proud to be a Benefit Corporation (or B Corp), defined as “a type of for-profit corporate entity that includes positive impact on society, workers the community and the environment.”


We want Berkeleyside to reflect the passionate, diverse voices of Berkeley, but we also want it to remain a place of civility and respect for other people. Guidelines for comments are simple: Be relevant, be courteous and argue with issues not people.

Read our full Comments Policy.

Jobs at Berkeleyside

There are currently no job openings at Berkeleyside. Freelance writers with story pitches should email editors@berkeleyside.com.

News about Berkeleyside

Nov. 2017: Emilie Raguso named Journalist of the Year

Berkeleyside Senior Reporter Emilie Raguso was named Journalist of the Year by the NorCal chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. “A reporter with deep knowledge of the community, Raguso is dedicated to exploring the longterm implications of local events,”SPJ NorCal wrote in its release about the award. “Her work also explores the local impact of state and national level decisions. As a senior​ ​reporter, she covers several beats including crime, land use and local government, and doggedly tracks down the information her readers need. Raguso is there for the breaking news and for the follow up stories. The board commends Raguso, whose work provides the kind of nuance, context and depth that are increasingly rare in community journalism.” Read more about the honor, and watch Raguso receiving the award.

Oct. 2017: Berkeleyside’s fifth Uncharted Berkeley Ideas Festival

Berkeleyside’s held its fifth annual two-day ideas festival, Uncharted: The Berkeley Festival of Ideas, on Oct. 27-28 at the Peet’s Theater at Berkeley Rep and the Freight & Salvage in downtown Berkeley. This year, Helena Brantley joined Lance Knobel at the helm as co-curator. Highlights included Joan Williams on class cluelessness, Ronald Rael on the architecture of border walls, and Rick Wilson on why “everything Trump touches dies.” The festival was attended by more than 400 people, many of whom came to its opening-night party at the Brower Center, participated in the new Living Room Conversations workshops hosted by JCC East Bay, and patronized the festival’s popup book store managed by Books Inc. In a feedback survey, 57% of festival-goers said the event was “Excellent” and 29% said it was “Very Good. ” Over 70% said they’d be very likely to recommend the festival to their friends. Read a recap and browse the photo galleries. Want to know more? Email Lance Knobel at lknobel@gmail.com

Sept. 2017: Lenfest Institute awards Berkeleyside grant 

The Lenfest Institute for Journalism  — a newly formed nonprofit whose mission is “to develop and support sustainable business models for great local journalism” — awarded Berkeleyside a $60,000 grant to create an open-source “Reader Revenue” tool-kit to help other local newsrooms around the country explore raising capital through a DPO. Berkeleyside Co-Founder and Managing Editor Tracey Taylor is driving the project and went to Philadelphia in October to meet with Lenfest and its other grant winners. Taylor was also invited to speak about Berkeleyside’s pioneering direct public offering at the 2017 Online News Association’s annual conference in D.C. Want to know more? Email Tracey Taylor at traceyktaylor@gmail.com

July 2017: Berkeleyside joins Facebook Journalism Project

Berkeleyside was invited to become a member of the Facebook Journalism Project whose goal is to establish stronger ties between Facebook and the news industry. Facebook says it is collaborating with news organizations to develop products, learn from journalists about ways it can be a better partner, and work with publishers and educators on how it can equip people with the knowledge they need to be informed readers in the digital age. Want to know more? Email Lance Knobel at lknobel@gmail.com

June 2017: Berkeleyside joins Membership Puzzle Project

Berkeleyside was invited to become part of the Membership Puzzle Project — founded by New York University Professor of Journalism Jay Rosen and pioneering Dutch news nonprofit De Correspondent — which is exploring the whys and ways of having readers become members. Want to know more? Email Tracey Taylor at traceyktaylor@gmail.com

Nov. 2016: Berkeleyside launched Direct Public Offering

Seven years after three veteran journalists launched Berkeleyside, the independent news startup invited its readers to become shareholders through a Direct Public Offering (DPO). Berkeleyside is the first news organization in the country to do a DPO. Its goal is to raise $800,000 to invest in the business so it can build on, and improve how it serves Berkeley and the East Bay. The funds enable Berkeleyside to hire a second full-time reporter, invest in more in-depth journalism, redesign the site to be more responsive and mobile-friendly, and expand its sales and marketing efforts. The DPO had raised $600,000 from 233 investors by Nov. 2017 and aims to close by March 2018. Visit Invest.Berkeleyside.com for details. Want to know more? Email Lance Knobel at lknobel@gmail.com