Hark! The Herald! (Radio Raves Edition)

October 19, 2015

From our Walt Whitman desk

The Boston Herald made its own page 2 today with this sort of newsish story.

Herald honored as ‘Innovator of the Year’

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PALO ALTO, Calif. — The Boston Herald was named “Innovator of the Year” yesterday after a vote of a joint conference of the Associated Press Media Editors and American Society of News Editors at Stanford University.
The coveted APME innovation award recognized the Herald for “its innovative platform called Boston Herald Radio that is fully integrated with its print, online and video divisions.”

“Innovator of the Year is a prestigious national award that speaks to a news organization’s innovative and creative approaches to reach their audience,” said Joe Hight, a member of APME’s executive committee and awards program chair. “The Boston Herald shows it is a leader in the country by winning this award. Boston Herald Radio is not only innovative but practical.


That’s six “innovations” if you’re keeping score at home.

Of course what’s most innovative about BHR, as we call it here at the Global Worldwide Headquarters, is the platform it provides for cross- and self-promotion. But why get technical about it on such a happy occasion?

Instead, hearty congratulations to the firsty local tabloid.


Hark! The Herald! (Pimp Our Pages Edition)

July 3, 2015

From our Walt Whitman desk

As the hardreading staff has relentlessly chronicled, the Boston Herald is excessively adept at promoting itself in the guise of news reporting. But the selfie local tabloid is blazing new trails in its weekly Gretta Style features.

Stylish logo:


Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 11.35.29 PM


Yesterday’s edition:


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Soup to nuts graf:

As for what to wear, I’m all about Barbara Biu’s metallic slides ($340) paired with a Lemlem patio dress ($245), both of which you’ll find on shelves at Grettaluxe in Wellesley now . . .

And as an ode to the holiday, make sure to bring Chloe’s red, small Faye bag ($1,390, also at Grettaluxe), a perfect summer statement to match the fiery show.


Oh, yeah – don’t forget the photo caption:


Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 11.35.10 PM


So, to recap: This particular Gretta Style feature is all about Gretta Monahan’s Grettaluxe store in Wellesley.

On the other hand, last week’s feature was all about Gretta Monahan’s Grettacole hair salon in Copley Square.


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Drive you nuts graf:


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So, to recap again: The Boston Herald is giving over its news pages to Gretta Monahan every week so she can promote her various enterprises.

Inevitable conclusions:

1) The Herald is paying Monahan to produce these features, which is a crime against common sense.

2) Monahan is paying the Herald to produce these features, which is a crime against journalistic ethics.

3) No money is changing hands, which is a crime against Herald readers.

The headscratching staff will make some phone calls today to sort out those options, but we don’t expect anyone will talk to us.

Regardless, as always, we’ll keep you posted.

Hark! The Herald! (Journalism Awards Edition)

June 29, 2015

From our Walt Whitman desk

The hardreading staff has a track record of being, well, hard on the selfie local tabloid. But we also believe in giving credit where credit’s due.

So, from Sunday’s Boston Herald, which is read by up to several people.



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The Associated Press Media Editors announced its awards earlier this month. Oddly, the only category without a winner was the aforementioned Innovator of the Year.


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Maybe it’s still TBA. If so, we’re sure the finalist local tabloid will let u know.

The SPJ Sigma Delta Chi medal, on the other hand, was already trumpeted by the Herald two months ago.

Not to get technical about it.

Regardless, sincere kudos to the Heraldniks.

The hardreading staff is, obviously, glad you’re here.

Hark! The Herald! (Michael Goldman/MBTA Edition)

June 24, 2015

From our Walt Whitman desk

Today’s Boston Herald features the latest in its series of told-you-so front pages.


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Helpful close-up:


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The story inside focuses on the $300,000 ad campaign the MBTA’s Boston Carmen’s Union has been running for several months.


Carmen spent $300G on ads to battle Baker’s MBTA reform

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The powerful Boston Carmen’s Union, in a bid to derail Gov. Charlie Baker’s MBTA reforms, has spent $300,000 on radio ads, organized campaign-style phone banks and poured thousands into the political coffers of key lawmakers and politicians 
overseeing T policy, a Herald 
review found.

The review shows the 6,000-member-strong labor group’s mounting resistance as a top legislative committee has rebuffed Baker’s key reforms . . .


The Herald’s Erin Smith and Matt Stout write, “[t]he carmen have put out three radio spots, at a cost of $300,000, so far, with a fourth expected by the end of the week and the campaign isn’t over yet, according to longtime Democratic campaign operative Michael Goldman, who is coordinating the media strategy for Local 589.” (Listen to one here.)

There’s also a radio blitz on local airwaves from the Amalgamated Transit Union, which Goldman says he’s not associated with. Of the union’s “we’re here to help” ads Goldman says, “[our] thing has been positive commercials.”

Positive, maybe, but not all that reliable, as CommonWealth magazine pointed out last month.

One ad says, “Given the advanced age of current equipment and tracks, it’s a miracle that fully 95 percent of the million-plus trips made each year have been completed on time. But the T transit workers won’t be satisfied until that number reaches 100 percent.”

Yeah. Except the Carmen’s Union definition of “completed on time” is . . . “actually happened.” If you define completed on time as “arrived at destination on schedule,” that 95% drops to around 72% (67% this year so far) according to CommonWealth’s Steve Koczlea and Bruce Mohl.

So, once again we see that MBTA=Might Be Totally Accurate.

Or might not.

Hark! The . . . Globe?

June 4, 2015

Our Walt Whitman desk is normally the sole province of the Boston Herald, but today it’s not the selfie local tabloid that’s celebrating itself and singing itself.

It’s the Boston Globe that’s passing off promotional material as bylined news.

To wit:

A new Boston tradition: The Globies sports awards


The Boston Globe has announced plans for a sports awards program that will honor the best of Boston and New England sports. The Globies Presented by Mercedes-Benz will be held Oct. 6 at House of Blues in Boston.

Awards will be given in a variety of categories, including MVPs of the Red Sox, Patriots, Bruins, Celtics, and Revolution, the Boston Pride Award, Community Hero, and Best Female Athlete.

“New England has one of the world’s most passionate sports fan bases and we want to create a new tradition to celebrate the teams and individuals that fuel our passion while forging a stronger connection with those fans,” said Globe CEO Mike Sheehan.


Not to mention with Mercedes-Benz.

Globe staffer Matt Pepin drew the short straw and had to write the puff piece, which includes more slop from Sheehan: “We are grateful to our principal partner, the Boston Area Mercedes-Benz Dealers, for leading the efforts to make this vision a reality, as well as our presenting sponsor MGM Springfield, a company with deep roots in sports and entertainment.”

Ah, that explains it – the Globies are a vision. All the more regrettable that it blurs the line between news and marketing.

Perhaps the stately local broadsheet should consider hiring a VP/Optometry for just these visionary occasions.

Hark! The Herald! (Adriana Cohen Plugola Edition)

May 4, 2015

From our Walt Whitman desk

You have to hand it to the Boston Herald: The selfie local tabloid finds endless ways to celebrate itself in its purported news pages.

Exhibit Umpteen, from today’s edition:


Talbots, Adriana Cohen help 
unemployed women find Success

Fashion is all about looking good. Who knew it can be used to do good, too?Adriana Cohen in a spring dress from Talbots/photo courtesy Talbots

Starting today, I’m going to be wearing stunning spring ensembles provided by Hingham-based retailer Talbots on my Boston Herald Radio show, “Boston Herald Drive.”

Each day, a new outfit, and you can view every one right on the Herald’s homepage. And after I’ve worn these fabulous dresses, jewelry and accessories generously donated by Talbots, I’ll be giving them to Dress for Success in Boston.


Put aside for a moment the whole concept of showcasing “stunning spring ensembles” on radio. And ignore the factory-installed bromides such as “There’s no doubt that the fastest way out of poverty is a good paying job. It’s the surest path to prosperity and achieving the American Dream.” (Ya think?)

Why the hell is this occupying a full news page in the flouncy local tabloid?

(To be sure graf goes here)

To be sure, this is a good cause and all involved should be applauded.

In a house ad.

Not in a bylined piece by (God help us all) a newspaper columnist.

Not to get technical about it.

Hark! The Herald! (Flack Scratch You Back Edition)

April 23, 2015

From our Walt Whitman desk

For years, the hardreading staff has noted in awe the ability of the Boston Herald to celebrate itself and sing itself in the paper’s purported news pages.

But Wednesday’s edition of the selfie local tabloid might represent its greatest achievement yet: An interview with the Herald’s editor by the Herald’s favorite flack.

To half-wit:

This purported column by barely read Talkers magazine publisher Michael Harrison about barely heard Boston Herald Radio.

Forward-looking Herald charting a new course

Boston Herald Editor-in-Chief Joe Sciacca is a newspaperman with truth in his heart, ink in his blood and digital Screen Shot 2015-04-23 at 12.40.50 AMvibrations in his brain.

Along with a multigenerational team of information practitioners, Sciacca has transformed what was purely a print publication into a multimedia news organization that spawned its own online radio station.


Seriously? Truth in his heart? Multimedia news organization?

Think the up to 17 Boston Herald Radio listeners know that?

You do the math.


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