Globe a Lively Postscript to the Herald

December 29, 2013

The hardreading staff has often referred to the Boston Herald as a lively index to the Boston Globe.

But things got turned around yesterday when the feisty local tabloid went Page One with outgoing mayor Tom Menino’s decision to skip the inauguration of his successor, Marty Walsh.

Went Page One gleefully, we might add – and exclusively in the local dailies’ bakeoff.

 

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Today the Boston Globe has the story Page One Metro, and the stately local broadsheet gives credit to the Herald high up in the piece.

Menino won’t see Walsh sworn in

Mayor breaks with tradition of going to successor’s event

Breaking with the city’s historical precedent, outgoing Mayor Thomas M. Menino will be one of just a handful of Boston mayors in the past century who did not attend their successors’ swearing-in ceremonies.

Menino told reporters on Friday that he will not formally participate in the Jan. 6 inauguration of Mayor-elect Martin J. Walsh.

“No,” Menino said, when asked by a Boston Herald reporter if he would be involved in the swearing in. “It’s Marty Walsh’s day. It’s not Tom Menino’s day.”

 

But today is the firsty local tabloid’s day, isn’t it?

 

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Hark! The Herald! (Orbitz Forfeitz Edition)

December 29, 2013

From our Walt Whitman desk

Saturday’s Boston Herald featured yet another feisty local tabloid triumph.

Delta says it will honor man’s tix

Delta Airlines has reversed its decision — after repeated Herald inquiries — to deny a man planning a family vacation to Disneyland 12613deltamg001the rock-bottom fare he booked through Orbitz on Thursday due to a systemwide web glitch that also offered $68 Hub-to-Hawaii round-trip flights.

“I’m not so frustrated by losing the tickets, just more by the way they’re treating me,” said Abel Feldhamer of Long Island, N.Y., when he first contacted the Herald yesterday. “They’re getting good press proclaiming they’re honoring these fares when they’re slapping some people in the face.”

 

You can catch the particulars here. But know this:

An Orbitz spokesman did not return a call or email from the Herald yesterday.

 

Guilty as charged, yeah?


Buried in the Globe, Headlined in the Herald

December 28, 2013

Deep inside a piece in today’s Boston Globe about a surprise birthday party for outgoing mayor Tom Menino is this:

“It is a little emotional,” Menino said. “I’ve been mayor for 20 years. I’ve done a lot of things in the last 20 years. I’m handing over the city to Marty Walsh to bring it to the next level.”

 

Except, according to the feisty local tabloid, he’s sort of not.

 

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The story inside:

Mayor Thomas M. Menino said yesterday he will not attend Mayor-elect Martin J. Walsh’s Jan. 6 swearing-in ceremony — a perceived snub some political observers say signifies a deepening rift between the two pols.Mayor birthday

“It’s usually considered a sign of good faith that you are having a proper transition of power from one administration to another. It’s a common courtesy. The fact that Menino is not going to be there suggests there is some sort of hostility there with his successor,” said Thomas J. Whalen, a Boston University social science professor.

“It’s kind of mean and small-minded. The idea of a democracy such as ours … we put aside our political differences and at least put forth the front that we are one and we are united,” Whalen added.

 

Along similar lines, the Globe’s front-page story Teachers union revealed as funder behind pro-Walsh PAC has this buried in the 15th and 16th grafs:

“Transparency was a centerpiece of the campaign, and Mayor-elect Walsh was very clear in public from the beginning that all independent expenditures should voluntarily disclose their donors,” Kate Norton, Walsh’s spokeswoman, said in a statement provided to the Globe Friday evening.

“The law prohibits any coordination between the campaign and any independent expenditure,” she said in the statement. “We don’t have any control over or awareness of their plans. Mayor-elect Walsh urged disclosure through statements to the press and sought to lead by example in providing complete transparency of his record, background, and contributions.”

 

Sort of a non-disclosure disclosure, eh?

Crosstown, the Herald played it this way on page 2:

Marty Walsh denies knowing AFT funded PAC ads

Mayor-elect Martin J. Walsh is claiming he had no idea the Boston teachers’ powerful national union was behind the last-minute, W1ST9604.JPGhalf-million-dollar ad drop by a mysterious PAC dubbed One Boston, whose pro-Walsh TV spot helped sweep him to victory in the campaign’s final weeks . . .

Walsh spokeswoman Kate Norton restated what the campaign said during the race, that they were prohibited by law from coordinating with outside groups, let alone knowing who was behind them.

 

One town, two different places.

UPDATE: The hard reading staff missed this Globe New England in brief item:

Mayor Thomas M. Menino will not attend the inauguration of his successor, Martin J. Walsh, on Jan. 6. Dot Joyce, Menino’s spokeswoman, said he had already made plans to go on vacation by the time inaugural details were finalized. She said Menino believes the inauguration is “Marty Walsh’s day,” and the mayor will meet with him that morning to hand over the reins. Joyce said Menino does not wish to slight Walsh, but rather wants to honor the fact that he will be the new mayor. Menino’s decision was first reported by the Boston Herald.

 

The rare local-on-local disclosure.

Yes!

Still, what we said.


Globe Fails to Deliver Delivery-Fail Story

December 26, 2013

From our One Town, Two Places desk

Once again the local dailies live in parallel universes.

Today’s Boston Herald front page:

 

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The inside story:

A Christmas delivery meltdown that saw retailers and shippers failing to del­iver gifts on time for the holiday could spur an upheaval — and even a backlash — in online shopping, experts said yesterday, as consumers took to social media to vent their spleen.A UPS delivery man prepares to deliver packages on Christmas Eve in New York

“I think too much was promised because the 
industry and the carriers
 underestimated how much demand there will be for
that last-minute type of delivery. I don’t think there’s any doubt that a lot of consumers and stores alike were really besieged at the last moment,” said Jon Hurst, president of the 
Retailers Association of Massachusetts.

 

Reaction by Herald commenters was decidedly mixed.

 

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Inevitably, the feisty local tabloiders wound up turning on each other:

 

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Crosstown at the Boston Globe, the story was . . . lost in transit.

Today’s stately local broadsheet has nothing on the carriers putting the X in Xmas, but it did have this helpful primer on returning gifts.

The garish sweater from your aunt. The Chia Pet from your brother-in-law. The PlayStation game from a grandmother who forgot you have an Xbox. Getting rid of unwanted gifts is as much a holiday tradition as receiving them.AP103518433181

About one-third of consumers returned at least one gift last year, according to the National Retail Federation, and many still do it the old-fashioned way: at a store’s customer service counter.

But before you get in line, take some basic steps to make it less aggravating.

Most crucially, if you received a receipt with your gift, keep it until you are sure you won’t be returning the item, said Edgar Dworsky, the Somerville-based founder of the consumer advocacy and education site ConsumerWorld.com.

 

Really? A lot of people include a receipt with their Christmas presents? The hard gifting staff had no idea.

One last thing: This time, at least, the Herald had the better nose for news. The Wall Street Journal had the carrier meltdown on its front page today, and the New York Times ran it on D1 of the Business section.

Season’s Beatings in the daily bakeoff, eh?


Boston Herald Has a Blue Christmas (Day)

December 26, 2013

The Boston Herald got coal in its stocking on Christmas Day.

Yesterday’s edition was all of 40 pages (with a couple of FSIs tossed in).

 

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The stately local broadsheet, on the other hand, had an embarrassment of pages (and FSIs).

A merry little Christmas indeed for the feisty local tabloid.


Merry Christmas Carroll!

December 25, 2013

From our One Town, Two Places desk

The local dailies published their traditional year-end poems yesterday, and they couldn’t be more different.

First up, the Boston Globe’s annual holidays card to readers, in verse compliments of Joseph P. Kahn.

Greetings of the season, all.

In setting up this conference call

To wish you cheer these holidays

We pray beseech the N.S.A.24poem

To please refrain from scooping data.

(OK, we’ll talk. But maybe later?)

For feeling in the yuletide mood

Our disposition’s not improved

With thoughts of clandestine surveillance

By Santa-suited federal agents.

We’d much prefer the privacy

Of carols trilled around the tree,

Children’s laughter in the air,

Stockings hung with affordable care,

Missives filled with peace and love

And swift access to HealthCare.gov.

 

And Kahn is off to the races.

Crosstown, the Boston Herald delivers its annual words of good cheer compliments of Track Gal Gayle Fee.

‘Twas the night before Christmas

And on the Fast Track,

Not a creature was stirring

They were all in the sack.

The Track Shack was cluttered

122413TrackToon13With our worn-out Jimmy Choos.

We’d taken them off.

It was time for a snooze.

The Tracklets were nestled

All snug in their beds,

While visions of iPads

Danced in their heads.

The Track was curled up

In our jammies so snug.

After a whole year of gossip,

We were resting our tongues!

 

Until they weren’t.

What’s interesting is how little intersection there is in the two ditties.

The feisty local tabloid devotes six stanzas to Boston sports; the stately local broadsheet, just this:

First, pour a whiskey, single-barrel,

For all the hirsute Sons of Farrell:

Pedey, Papi, Daniel Nava,

Closer Koji Uehara.

Salud to bullpen cop Steve Horgan,

Donna Tartt, and Freeman, Morgan.

 

Name-dropping in the Herald: Kim Kardashian, the Wahlbergs, Ben Affleck, Whitey Bulger.

Name-dropping in the Globe:

Among pals we’ve wrapped presents for

Are Chiwetel Ejiofor,

Ivan Klima, Omar Sy,

And brave Malala Yousafzai.

Wassail to you, Jennifer F. Boylan,

Mark Pollock, Ben Cherington,

Mireille Enos, Janet Yellen

And ageless Sir Ian McKellen.

 

Finally, references to crosstown rivals.

Herald:

He filled all the stockings,

Winked and pulled on a lobe.

“All the good stuff’s for the Herald.

Coal for John Henry’s Globe!”

 

Globe:

What crosstown rival?

And then there’s this from the hardreading staff:

Merry Christmas!

(Bill O’Reilly, eat your heart out.)

P.S. Family lore has it that my old man wanted to name his first-born Mary Christmas Carroll. Cooler heads (read: Jackie’s Agnes) prevailed.


Why the Boston Globe Matters and the Herald – Almost – Doesn’t

December 23, 2013

Exhibit Umpteen: Yesterday’s front pages of the local dailies.

Boston Herald:

 

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Boston Globe:

 

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Call the roll: Three major stories on Page One of the Globe (BRA, Pope FrancisRevere casino) vs. zero major stories on the Herald’s Page One. (To be fair, the feisty local tabloid did make news inside with this Foxy Lady strip club, er, bust.)

So it’s no contest on the issue of content.

More important, though – without the Boston Herald, the Globe is Roger Federer pre-Rafael Nadal: A dominant force with no worthy rival to really challenge it (Federer won Wimbledon in 2003 against Mark Philip-friggin’-poussis for God’s sake).

So once again: We’re lucky to live in a two-daily town.

Regardless of the merits of the two dailies.