Boston Globe’s New Drop-Ed Pages Are . . . New

May 5, 2015

As the masthead warned us, the Boston Globe has freshened up its editorial/opinion pages for whatever reason (maybe a focus group?).

From yesterday’s edition of the stately local broadsheet:

 

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Modern! Easy! Excellent!

Today’s edition of the Globe features the great unveiling. Left-hand page:

 

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Right-hand page:

 

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So, for example, Decoder, the explainer with a point of view, quite logically starts out with the umpteenth example of Boston as the Can’t Do city.

skate_park

Under the Bridge

IT WAS BORN of the Big Dig, so perhaps it’s no surprise that it has taken so long for the Lynch Family Skatepark to break ground. The Charles River Conservancy first announced the project in 2004, with seed money from skateboarder Tony Hawk and a sense that Boston’s skateboard underground, maligned and sometimes misunderstood, deserved a concrete paradise of its own.

 

A mere ten years later, Joanna Weiss helpfully points out, construction finally started late last month.

And etc. You can check it all out here.

One thing that struck the hardreading staff: Only one editorial instead of the two or three in the old, unfreshened format. That, of course, might change. We’ll see.

But this also strikes us: The hardy few readers who actually do venture onto the opinion pages of the Globe are almost assuredly more interested in the content than the packaging. We’ll see about that as well.


Mayweather & Pacquiao Sucker Punch Boston Herald

May 2, 2015

The Fight of the Century (five years late?) is on tonight, with Floyd Mayweather Jr. facing off against Manny Pacquiao in the squared circle at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

As for the Fight of the Century advertising, the Boston Globe seems to have won the early rounds of that tilt between the local dailies.

From Friday’s edition of the Globe:

 

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No such ad ran in Friday’s Boston Herald.

In terms of news coverage, yesterday’s fighty local tabloid did feature this Ron Borges piece.

While the stately local broadsheet ran this Callum Borchers Page One take on the fight.

The hardfighting staff looks forward to both of today’s bakeoffs. But we’re only paying for one.


Herald Coverage of Rob’s Girlfriend More Gronktastic

April 30, 2015

The newly minted girlfriend of New England Patriot tight (usually) end Rob Gronkowski hit the highly coveted dailies double today: Inside Track in the Boston Herald, Names in the Boston Globe.

Begin with the stately local broadsheet.

She’s cheering for Benrus (and Gronk) now

camille1AFormer Patriots cheerleader Camille Kostek has had a busy week on the Internet.

On Monday, TMZ broke the news that the Connecticut native was dating Patriot Rob Gronkowski. Meanwhile, it was also announced Monday that she’d been named the new ambassador for the Rhode Island company Benrus. By Tuesday afternoon, the military-inspired fashion brand had launched a new website with Kostek all over it.

 

And how does she feel about putting away the pompoms?

“I kind of relate myself to Vince Wilfork,” she said, of her last big gig being the Super Bowl. “There wasn’t a better way to close it out.”

 

Wonder if Wilfork is feeling like the Camille Kostek of Houston?

Probably not, eh?

Crosstown at the frothy local tabloid, the former communications major at Eastern Connecticut State showed that she has her priorities straight.

Former New England 
Patriots cheerleader Camille Kostek would like to be known as more than just the girl who has been out on a few dates with Pats one-man party Rob Gronkowski!

“I know the stuff about Rob has been in the headlines, but I’m super excited to talk about myself and my career,” Camille told the Track. “I’ve really been working hard and was working hard before I was ever able to meet him.”

 

Absolutely.

In contrast to the Globe, the Herald associates Kostek with the polar opposite of Vince Wilfork.

So does she take inspiration from the most famous supermodel of all: Mrs. Tom Brady?

“Oh my goodness, do I aspire to be like Gisele?” she said. “I just turned 23, I’m enjoying being young and focusing on my career. This is a super-exciting moment, but I’m just starting to blossom.”

 

Ouch.

So it’s not just the boyfriend who knows how to hit.


Hark! The Herald! (Sigma Delta Chi Awards Edition)

April 25, 2015

From our Walt Whitman desk

Well, the Society of Professional Journalists has announced its annual Sigma Delta Chi awards, and the Boston Herald exercised great restraint by waiting until page 2 to announce its good fortune.

 

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For those of you keeping score at home, that’s Herald reporters Matt Stout and Erin Smith who won a Non-Deadline Reporting award for their coverage of the state’s dreadful foster care system. Congrats to both.

Crosstown, the Boston Globe’s David Abel won a Feature Reporting award for his piece, For Richard family, loss and love. Abel has yet to get a shoutout from the stately local broadsheet, but we’ll give him one here.

Elsewhere in Boston media, WBUR’s Asma Khalid and Shawn Bodden won a Digital Audio award for A Fear Of Going To School: 5 Former Boston Students Reflect On Busing. Kudos to that duo.

A nice haul for the locals, yeah?


Herald: Barack O-bomb-a’s Pats Joke Falls Flat

April 24, 2015

From our One Town, Two Different Worlds desk

When the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots went to the White House for the customary presidential pat on the back, here’s what they got to kick off the festivities.

 

 

Pats coach Bill Belichick isn’t the only one who gave Obama’s lame joke the thumbs down. Today’s Boston Herald is in Full Snit over the Deflategate dis.

Start with Page One:

 

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Then move on to Tom Shattuck’s column:

SPOTLIGHT INTERCEPTED

Barack Obama, Bill Belichick, Robert Kraft

It was a day that should have belonged to the Super Bowl champion New England Patriots, but in a reversal of last February’s fortune it came to a dramatic and sudden halt.

Interception, Obama.

The president called a very different play as the champs gathered at the White House South Lawn to accept an attaboy for their Super Bowl victory.

But the egotist in chief made it all about him.

“I usually tell a bunch of jokes at these events,” he mused, “but with the Patriots in town I was worried that 11 of 12 of them would fall flat.”

 

That one sure did.

Back at the frosty local tabloid,  sports scribe Karen Guregian also weighed in.

Just like so many people at this point, the leader of the free world can’t help but chuckle at what this is, and what it’s become. So right out of the gate, he set the tone for the Patriots visit by taking a poke at Deflategate, and it became the theme of the day Barack Obama, Bill Belichick, Robert Kraftwith Pats tight end Rob Gronkowski later piling on . . .

When Gronk was asked if he had enjoyed himself before the president’s speech, perhaps with a beverage or two, Gronk drew on Obama’s Deflategate remark.

“No, there was no drinking,” he said. “Maybe the president was wasted from his deflate joke. We’re still wondering as an organization about that, right?”

 

(To be fair graf goes here)

To be fair, Guregian’s column was mostly about NFL commissioner Roger Goodell’s foot-dragging in his investigation into the pigskin rumpus. Regardless, look for the umbrage-industrial complex to continue Obama-bashing for awhile.

Crosstown at the Boston Globe, Ben Volin’s piece about Pats players (as well as owner Robert Kraft and Belichick) visiting wounded vets at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center was the main story today:

 

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The Obama joke also got mentioned in Shalise Manza Young’s piece, but it was no big deal.

Obummer, eh Heraldniks?


Boston Dailies (wait for it) Diverge on Gates-gate

April 24, 2015

From our Late to the Ancestral Party desk

The current Henry Louis Gates Jr./Ben Affleck/PBS/Sony Entertainment/WikiLeaks rumpus over the excising of Affleck’s slave-owning ancestry from Gates’s documentary series Finding Your Roots got very different play in Thursday’s local dailies.

Let’s let the Boston Globe’s Ty Burr set the scene.

Lessons in inconvenient truths

Affleck revelation shows that nothing stay hidden nowadays

This week’s celebrity tempest in a teapot is brought to you by Ben Affleck, Henry Louis Gates Jr., PBS, and Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton. Oh, and WikiLeaks, which, if it had hands, would be rubbing them together 8917b9a34d2c47788d1664887d6c02e1-8917b9a34d2c47788d1664887d6c02e1-0in adolescent glee.

The website, whose editor in chief, Julian Assange, is still living in political asylum at the Ecuadoran Embassy in London, recently released tens of thousands of documents left over from the Sony hack late last year — the ones that the original hackers (North Koreans or whoever; the jury’s still out) hadn’t bothered to make public. Among those memos is a back-and-forth between Harvard professor Gates and Lynton about whether to expose the fact that Affleck had ancestors who owned slaves on Gates’s PBS documentary series, “Finding Your Roots.”

 

Affleck asked Gates to omit that part of his ancestry. Gates turned for guidance to Lynton, who said “all things being equal, I would take it out.” But Gates clearly knew it would be wrong to do so, telling Lynton that if the issue ever became public, “It would embarrass [the star] and compromise our integrity. . . . Once we open the door to censorship, we lose control of the brand.”

Well, consider it lost, Henry, since you did omit the Affleck family’s slave-owning past and, according to the lamest press statement since Mark Sanford hiked the Appalachian Trail, “focused on what we felt were the most interesting aspects of his ancestry.”

Uh-huh.

Burr’s conclusion: “The stain isn’t that Affleck had ancestors who owned slaves. It’s that he thought we’d think less of him — or his celebrity brand — if we knew. And now, poor schmo, we do.”

A Globe editorial also spanked Affleck: “This Cambridge homeboy needs a reality check. You can edit truth out of movies, but not out of family history.”

Actually, it’s the Boston Globe that needs a reality check.

The issue here isn’t Ben Affleck, who did what most people might instinctively do. The issue is Skip (Journalism 101) Gates.

And the Boston Herald’s Mark Perigard nailed him on it in Thursday’s edition.

‘Roots’ censorship shows host Gates has got to go

Faces of America

Stop stalling, PBS.

You know what needs to be done.

Either cancel “Finding Your Roots” or fire host, executive producer and Harvard professor Henry Louis “Skip” Gates Jr.

 

As Perigard notes, Gates could have used this whole kerfuffle as a “teachable moment.”

He could have reminded [Affleck] he is not responsible for the sins of his ancestors.

He could have appealed to his ego and told him his reputation would only be enhanced by 
acknowledging this shameful bit of family history.

He could have informed him that previous guests — including Anderson Cooper, Derek Jeter and Ken Burns — have discovered slave owners lurking in their family trees.

Most critically, Gates should have recognized his own obligation to the truth.

 

But he didn’t.

The great Henry Louis Gates Jr. tried to cover his ass.

And, as Mark Perigard says, his ass should now be fired.

(More, no doubt, to come as we head downstairs for today’s papers.0


Page One Hill-arity Ensues at Boston Dailies

April 21, 2015

From our One Town, Two Different Hillarys desk 

(First in what we expect will be a long-running series)

It’s gonna be like this every time Hillary Clinton (D-Chelsea) goes to New Hampshire.

Boston Globe:

 

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From the piece by Annie Linskey and James Pindell:

During a stop at Whitney Brothers, a furniture company in Keene, [Clinton] laid out a tax reform philosophy that would differentiate between businesses like that one and those that “are just playing back and forth in the global marketplace to get one tenth of one percent of advantage” and were “at the root of some of the economic problems that we all remember from 2008.”

She also cast herself as a defender of Social Security and tried to demonstrate that she shares common cause with factory workers struggling to get by.

 

Uh-huh.

Crosstown at the Boston Herald, Clinton’s definitely no woman of the people.

 

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From the piece by Matt Stout and Prisca Pointdujour:

Clinton came [to Keene] for her first stop in the Granite State since announcing her 2016 Oval Office campaign. The former U.S. secretary of state toured Whitney Brothers, a family-owned children’s furniture business, and huddled with employees for a much-publicized roundtable — but never pressed the flesh with several dozen people huddled outside.

Most of the ignored backers were also young — a key demographic for the former first lady.

 

Also no doubt struggling to get by. Or at least get acknowledged.

Just for good measure, Herald columnist Joe Battenfeld piled on:

Listen up, voters: Hilary doesn’t have time for you

So it looks like Hillary Clinton’s idea of a “listening” tour is strictly invitation only.

Just ask the good people of Keene, N.H., a liberal hamlet where a half-dozen workers at a business hand-picked by Clinton’s Screen Shot 2015-04-21 at 3.06.06 PMcampaign made the cut. But dozens of unscreened voters standing outside in the rain? Sorry, Hillary won’t be “listening” to you.

And voters better get used to it, because Clinton can pretty much do whatever she wants until next fall. Who’s going to protest, her Democratic primary 
rivals? There aren’t any. The media? Most are in the tank.

 

Not the Herald, though. In all matters Clinton, the feisty local tabloid is the tank.


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