Just a year after the streets of SF were abuzz with near weekly protests blocking tech shuttle bus routes, the Chronicle is ringing the death knell for the anti-tech movement as a whole. Taking a cue from that poll we talked about last week, the paper says the movement has lost its momentum and the tide appears to have shifted in the city toward a détante of sorts between tech companies and some of their adversaries.
As evidence of the movement's lack of energy, the Chron notes the smallish turnout for The Crappies protest outside The Crunchies last week, and incorrectly states that "Evening news crews skipped the hubbub altogether." (KTVU covered the protest, along with the cab drivers protesting Uber.)
One member of the protest group Counterforce admits, "As it turned out, after the media had digested our actions, there was no groundswell of support from young people or everyday residents of San Francisco." The anonymous Counterforce member also says that the group has dissolved, and adds that most people they hoped to recruit to their ranks "are either captured by the capitalist economy and working full time to pay rent, have been priced out, or are a transplant working for the tech industry."
The Chron also notes Mark Zuckerberg's PR-boosting donation to SF General last week, and quotes someone from the non-profit St. Anthony's Foundation as saying, "The climate seems to have shifted from high-profile protests (a la tech bus protests) to one that is focused on hammering out a solution.”
And for everyone in the comments who continues to believe that SFist has a hardcore anti-tech stance, I'll take this moment to clarify: SFist is not anti-tech. We know that we live in a city and region where various web businesses, mobile apps, software companies, and others have been born, and that a great many Bay Area people make their livings from some end of the tech industry.
But we are pro-street theater, and we are obligated to cover the controversies and little dramas that play out in the local media, and there's no getting around the fact that the anti-tech sect has been pretty loud and un-ignorable for the past eighteen months or so.
Also, we are all for challenging the status quo, and for bemoaning the ridiculous rental market which WE KNOW, can not be wholly blamed on one industry, but the population boom kind of can be.
Hey, tech pays a lot of bills, and certainly isn't going away. There are no easy enemies to blame for SF's growing pains, but it's probably too soon to assume that everyone who's dissatisfied with how the city is changing is going to go silent or disappear.