An Oakland Tribune story today by Grace Rauh about the philanthropy of Bill Gates includes a paragraph that says Gates’ foundation loaned money to the Tribune’s owner, MediaNews Group, in order to buy the San Jose Mercury News and other former Knight Ridder newspapers in the Bay Area. The disclosure is new for MediaNews. On Nov. 19, the Mercury News ran a story by John Boudreau about Gates receiving the Tech Museum’s “Humanitarian Award” without any such disclosure. But in the Merc’s defense, they did report on Aug. 25 that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, along with General Electric Capital Corp., several banks, insurance companies, mutual funds and other entities, loaned $350 million to MediaNews. (The Gates’ loan was first reported here on the Press Club Web site Aug. 11.) How much of the $350 million came from Gates’ foundation has not been reported by MediaNews.

SF Press Club News

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