Before there was Facebook or Twitter, there was CultureVulture.net, founded in 1998 by Arthur Lazere, in San Francisco. Lazere, who died in 2006, was a crusader for arts journalism on the internet. He was persuasive in convincing the press offices of the major performing arts venues as well as movie publicists in San Francisco that critics for CultureVulture should receive the same rights and access as writers for the print and broadcast media. The site continued to grow as Lazere recruited writers in cities in Europe and across the US, many of whom continue to contribute.
Lazere also recruited Michael Wade Simpson, who was freelancing for CultureVulture as well as the San Francisco Chronicle and other Bay Area periodicals and offered him the site as his health faded. Simpson has run CultureVulture since then, with the help of editors John Sullivan and Beverly Berning, expanding coverage and areas of interest, and continuing to offer great writers a place to have their say. The latest “look” of the site was unveiled in December 2013.
The mission of CultureVulture was never to be comprehensive. Established along the lines of a literary journal, the site seeks to represent the interests of talented arts writers, wherever they may be.