Boston Herald Radio All Pimped Out to Advertisers

February 20, 2015

As the hardreading staff noted several months ago, the Boston Herald is not exactly covert in its catering to the few advertisers it manages to attract.

The Herald Runs on Dunkin’

As our Walt Whitman desk attests on a regular basis, the Boston Herald is a past master at using its newshole to promote . . . that’s right – the Herald. And now apparently, the fuzzy local tabloid is offering the same sort of ad-itorial package to its advertisers.

Witness the latest installment of the paper’s daily plug for Boston Herald Radio, the webcast that up to several people a day listen to.

 

screen-shot-2014-09-29-at-12-08-46-pm

 

Nice bit of venial synergy for Dunkin’ Donuts, eh? Lede of the “interview” at left:

Todd Wallace, field marketing manager for Dunkin’ Donuts, joined Boston Herald Radio’s “Morning Meeting” with Hillary Chabot and Joe Battenfeld to talk about the iconic coffee chain’s new products.

 

Now comes this piece from the Nieman Journalism Lab’s Joseph Lichterman about local newspapers that hope online radio can become significant revenue generators. Along the way, Lichterman nails the coffin shut on the thirsty local tabloid’s unabashed willingness to pimp out any part of its editorial content to advertisers.

Advertising has also been slow for Boston Herald Radio, but the station has been able to introduce new forms of advertising by integrating advertisers into segments of its shows. Last fall, a marketing manager for Dunkin’ Donuts appeared on the Herald’s morning show to promote Dunkin’s new dark roast coffee.

“Sales love it, we love it in programming, and the clients love it,” said Herald Radio executive producer Tom Shattuck.

 

The first and third of those make perfect sense. But . . . we love it in programming?

That’s just sad.

Advertisements

The Herald Runs on Dunkin’

September 29, 2014

As our Walt Whitman desk attests on a regular basis, the Boston Herald is a past master at using its newshole to promote . . . that’s right – the Herald. And now apparently, the fuzzy local tabloid is offering the same sort of ad-itorial package to its advertisers.

Witness the latest installment of the paper’s daily plug for Boston Herald Radio, the webcast that up to several people a day listen to.

 

Screen Shot 2014-09-29 at 12.08.46 PM

 

Nice bit of venial synergy for Dunkin’ Donuts, eh? Lede of the “interview” at left.

Todd Wallace, field marketing manager for Dunkin’ Donuts, joined Boston Herald Radio’s “Morning Meeting” with Hillary Chabot and Joe Battenfeld to talk about the iconic coffee chain’s new products.

 

You gotta hear this segment to believe it. Those Heraldniks sure can take the r out of radio.


Plus ça change at the Boston Herald . . .

May 8, 2014

Back in the 1980s the hardreading staff carved out a spot for itself as a local advertising critic, possibly the smallest franchise in the universe. As such, we contributed to the splendid publication AdEast, which sadly seems lost to posterity.

Anyway, last night we happened upon some old clips and what did we see but a piece from 1986 headlined The Great Comics Strip Wars, which detailed the Herald’s nabbing nine comic strips – all, not coincidentally, controlled at the time by the News America Syndicate, which was owned by $(KGrHqN,!rMFJl!RzI0HBSc9s129bg~~60_12Herald owner Rupert Murdoch – from the Boston Globe.

Two passages stood out to us almost 30 years later.

First:

Under the ownership of Rupert Murdoch, the proverbial self-made man who worships his creator, the Herald has embodied tabloid journalism at its best. It serves as an excellent table of contents for the town’s “serious” newspaper, it has lots of pictures . . . and it doesn’t clutter up its pages with ads.

 

And then this:

Arguably, the greatest strength of the Herald is its uncanny knack of finding a hard-news angle in its own circulation gains and promotional activities.  I’ll never forget the investigative vigor displayed by the Herald when the paper was running its first Wingo game. Stories began appearing about the the town and the townsfolk of Wingo, Kentucky (pop. 646 or thereabouts). As fine a group of people as they are, they were finer yet for all having received a free subscription to the Herald and their very own Wingo cards.

 

See our Walt Whitman desk for updated details.

Once it nabbed the comics from the Globe, the then-feistier local tabloid “launched a series of hard-hitting features, painting this as the most significant exodus since Biblical times.”

. . . plus c’est la même chose, oui?

P.S. If any of you splendid readers want to see the whole AdEast piece, just say the word and we’ll ask the Missus to shoot it.

 


Herald Hitches Carr to Globe

June 9, 2013

Apparently Boston Herald columnist Howie Carr has run out of ways to milk his presence on Whitey Bulger’s witness list, which would presumably keep him from covering the mobster’s trial in person.

So the feisty local tabloid has followed in the Boston Globe’s footsteps and asked the court to let their Howie go.

jacobs_howie_3-6288449Herald wants columnist in courtroom

The Boston Herald filed a request in federal court Saturday to exclude the newspaper’s columnist Howie Carr from a sequestration order that would prevent him from sitting in the courtroom during the trial of James “Whitey” Bulger, the notorious gangster who has been the subject of countless Carr columns and several books.

The motion came a day after US District Court Judge Denise Casper granted a similar request from The Boston Globe to exclude veteran journalists, reporter Shelley Murphy and columnist Kevin Cullen, who wrote a book together about Bulger, from the same sequestration order. “The Boston Herald and Mr. Carr respectfully submit that the reasons supporting exemption of those journalists similarly require exclusion of Mr. Carr from the sequestration order,” the newspaper’s lawyer, Elizabeth A. Ritvo, said in the filing Saturday.

 

Funny thing is, that report appeared in the Globe. Nothing in the Herald about it.

The hardreading staff is checking with our Walt Whitman desk for clarification.


Boston Globe ‘Reports’ on HUBweek (Sponsor: Globe)

September 20, 2016

From our Walt Whitman desk

The hardreading staff has long whacked around the Boston Herald for celebrating itself and singing itself in so-called news reports. Now it’s time to give the Boston Globe a dope slap.

For starters, here’s what headlined the Globe’s homepage at 12:45 this morning:

 

screen-shot-2016-09-20-at-12-47-53-am

 

That’s the residue of this Michael Levenson piece at the top of yesterday’s Globe front page:

HUBweek aims for wider appeal

screen-shot-2016-09-20-at-12-53-08-am

There will be a party in the South End with music, art installations, and an unusual tasting competition featuring six beers brewed with water from the Charles River that’s been purified (they promise) by a local company.

There will be intimate seven-person lunches in Kendall Square where anyone can ask a Broad Institute geneticist why science hasn’t cured cancer or delve into the dangers of artificial intelligence with a director of the Harvard Innovation Lab.

And just before the first presidential debate, a prominent philosopher will lead an even more high-minded debate at Faneuil Hall, asking: Is it fair to tax the rich to help the poor? And should rich countries have the right to restrict immigration?

Such are the events — both playful and provocative — that organizers are planning for the slightly revamped second year of HUBweek, a festival devoted to the arts, science, and technology that is aiming to become Boston’s answer to South by Southwest in Austin, Texas.

 

Reality check: Those four paragraphs feature roughly the same number of plugs as Joe Biden’s head.

It’s not until the sixth graf (on the jump page) that readers learn this:

[O]rganizers are . . .  grappling with how to ensure that the annual festival — which is sponsored by The Boston Globe, Harvard University, Massachusetts General Hospital, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology — does not cater solely to the business and academic elite in downtown Boston, the Seaport, and Cambridge, where most of the events are held.

 

Maybe the Globe should grapple with how to ensure that promotional material is not presented as news. The hardreading staff would be happy to participate in that high-minded debate.

Meanwhile . . . Free the Michael Levenson One! 


Hark! The Herald! (OneOrlando Fund Edition)

June 16, 2016

From our Walt Whitman desk

As the hardreading staff has chronicled in excruciating detail, the Boston Herald is a past master at promoting itself in its news pages.

But now comes the selfie local tabloid promoting itself in this half-page ad for the OneOrlando Fund.

 

Screen Shot 2016-06-16 at 12.37.13 AM

 

So you might reasonably be thinking:

1) This is a fund set up by the Boston Herald

2) The multiphobic Herald (immigrants, Muslims, GLBT, and etc.) has finally seen the light.

Except . . .

The OneOrlando Fund has nothing to do with the Herald. From its website:

 

Screen Shot 2016-06-16 at 12.51.49 AM

 

We’ll give the Herald the benefit of the doubt and assume this is just the milk of human kindness. But given the sketchy local tabloid’s track record, well, draw your own conclusions.


Hark! The Herald! (Cohen After WashPost Edition)

May 11, 2016

From our Walt Whitman desk

Call it the fisty local tabloid, ’cause the punches are flyin’ today.

It all started with this Callum Borchers piece in yesterday’s Washington Post.

Pundits achieve cable-news stardom after converting into Donald Trump supporters

Screen Shot 2016-05-11 at 12.38.41 PM

Last summer, shortly after Donald Trump launched his angry missile of a campaign with that memorable remark about Mexicans and rapists, Kayleigh McEnany sounded like pretty much every other talking head on cable news.

“I think he said something very unartful, very inappropriate,” she told Don Lemon during a June 29 segment on “CNN Tonight.”

“I’m here to tell you, he’s not going to be anywhere near the top five,” McEnany added. “He’s not a serious contender within the Republican Party. And I think he made that pretty clear when the most important thing he said in his speech was, ‘I am rich, I am rich,’ repeatedly.”

Today, McEnany sounds very different — both from her earlier self and from better-known conservative commentators such as Karl Rove and S.E. Cupp, who remain highly critical of the presumptive Republican presidential nominee. McEnany is now a staunch Trump supporter, a turnaround that has helped make the newly minted Harvard Law School graduate a rising star on CNN . . .

 

McEnany, Borchers writes, “is one of a small handful of commentators — including Jeffrey Lord, Scottie Nell Hughes, Adriana Cohen and Carl Higbie — who have made defending the real estate mogul their niche and in the process made themselves hot commodities.”

And hot under the collar, in Cohen’s case. The Boston Herald columnist fired back at Borchers in today’s edition.

D.C. hit job ignores facts

Post piece demeans female pundits who back Trump

If you want to see what the war on women looks like, you need look no further than The Washington Post.Screen Shot 2016-05-11 at 1.39.38 PM

To be more specific, the war on conservative women.

Because I have dared to write supportive opinion columns on Donald Trump, I was featured along with two other female commentators in a Post story that stated that I have “achieved cable-news stardom after converting” into a Donald Trump supporter, that I, along with the others, “have made defending the real estate mogul their niche and in the process made themselves hot commodities.”

 

Cohen says despite Borchers’ claim that she was an “occasional guest” on CNN, Fox News Channel, and Fox Business Network “before getting behind Trump,” she actually appeared on national TV and radio shows “at least 100 times over the past few years, long before writing columns backing Trump and his positions this February.”

Cohen does not, however, address this part of Borchers’ piece:

On March 25, during a live segment on CNN, [Cohen] brought up a National Enquirer story that alleged multiple extramarital affairs by Cruz — unsubstantiated rumors that the mainstream media had mostly ignored until then. As anchor Kate Bolduan shook her head, Cohen went a step further, asserting on live TV that fellow guest Amanda Carpenter, Cruz’s former communications director, had been identified as one of five mistresses.

 

Ouch.

One last point: As Cohen points out, some of the comments attached to Borchers’ piece are brutally misogynistic. But during this election season, that’s par for the course. Trump supporters or no.


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’

Screen Shot 2015-10-19 at 10.54.20 AM

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.

Really.


Hark! The Herald! (Pimp Our Pages Edition II)

July 7, 2015

From our Walt Whitman desk

As the hardreading staff noted last week, the Boston Herald is plumbing new depths of journalistic malpractice with its weekly Gretta Style column, in which fashion butterfly Gretta Monahan gets to plug her retail store and her hair salon.

Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 11.35.29 PM

And as we promised, we contacted both the selfie local tabloid and Herself for comment. (We waited until yesterday because, really, how stupid is it to contact anyone on July 3rd?)

And . . . nothing.

Curious, because our email to Herald Lifestyle Editor Sandra Kent seems innocuous enough.

Dear Ms. Kent,

[We are] the author of the blog It’s Good to Live in a Two-Daily Town. [We’re] hoping you might give [us] some information about the weekly Gretta Style column in the Herald.

Are there guidelines for how often Gretta Monahan can feature her store and/or salon?

Is Gretta Monahan paid for producing the weekly column?

Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely,

[The Hardreading Staff]

 

Likewise, we left a message for Ms. Monahan asking for an interview.

So far, no interview.

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


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:

 

Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 11.34.17 PM

 

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.

 

Screen Shot 2015-07-03 at 12.16.36 AM

 

Drive you nuts graf:

 

Screen Shot 2015-07-02 at 11.47.59 PM

 

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.