Do Globe Layoffs Have ‘Your Worried’? It’s Too Late

December 2, 2018

As the hardreading staff worked its way through Saturday’s local dailies, we encountered this headline on Hiawatha Bray’s latest tech column in the Boston Globe.

 

 

Of course the headline should have read “have you worried.”

Then again, grammatical glitches in the shrinky local broadsheet are no surprise, given that the Globe is shedding editorial staff like a Corgi in spring.

Which should have your worried, no?

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Boston Globe Is Now the Dollar Store of Dailies

November 22, 2018

Recipients of the latest Boston Globe Weekender newsletter were greeted with this cheery offering from local scribe Michael Andor Brodeur.

From now through what is still for some reason called “Cyber Monday,” Weekenders can score a one-year subscription to the Globe online for just a buck a week for a year. I just did the math on that and it comes out to just $52, which is objectively less than other prices (including the usual $360).

 

Stop the presses!

On second thought, don’t. For several years now the Globeniks have staked their future on expanded digital revenues, as the redoubtable Dan Kennedy noted last month in Media Nation.

[T]he paper is reporting that it has passed the 100,000 level for digital-only subscriptions, a benchmark the paper’s executives had originally hoped to reach by the end of June. Don Seiffert of the Boston Business Journal has the details.

When I interviewed Globe editor Brian McGrory for “The Return of the Moguls” nearly two years ago, he said the paper would start to look like a sustainable business if it could hit 200,000.

 

Not to be the skunk at the garden party, but given that 1) the Globe introduced its paywall in 2011, and 2) it’s taken seven years to get to 100,000 digital-only subscribers, the question remains: Will Globe owner John Henry have the patience to wait until 2025 for the paper “to look like a sustainable business”?

As the BBJ’s Seiffert noted:

[G]etting to the second 100,000 subscriptions will be a heavy lift for a paper like the Globe that’s bound by geography. Rick Edmonds, media business analyst for the Poynter Institute, said in an email interview a couple weeks ago regarding the Globe’s digital progress that “as with print circulation, (digital) growth can be hard to sustain.”

“It takes marketing, a steady effort to convert people to fully paid, keeping renewal rates up and replacing churned subs with new ones at the discounted price,” said Edmonds. “If times are tight and (Globe owner) John Henry is impatient with losses as he has said — I can see the budget for all of that being cut back.”

 

Maybe even cut back to a dollar a week.


Boston Herald Is Your Hemp Gummies Headquarters

November 20, 2018

The hardreading staff is guessing its no coincidence that today’s edition of the tokey local tabloid . . .

 

 

. . . features this ad on page 17.

 

 

But, kids! – make sure you read the fine print.

That’s right: There’s no THC in Hemp Gummies – just hemp.

See here for further details.

And watch the Herald for more ads like the one above.

P.S. The Boston Globe just launched its Marijuana vertical. We’ll see if the Herald follows suit.


Globe Omits Reading’s Racist History vs. Bill Russell

November 16, 2018

The racist elements of Reading, Mass. are at it again, as the Boston Globe’s Cristela Guerra reported on Page One yesterday.

Reading’s new struggle with an old evil

More than 30 incidents of racist, anti-Semitic graffiti have been reported since May 2017, school officials say

READING — Nearly every day, teachers at Reading Memorial High School scan their classrooms carefully, sweeping their eyes across floors and furniture — in search of swastikas.

In this school of more than 1,200 students, the Nazi symbol and other racist graffiti have become a haunting presence, surfacing again and again, defacing bathroom stalls and stairwells, scrawled on bench legs, carved into railings around the high school.

 

But the Globe piece on the “old evil” overlooked the evilest incident of racism in Reading’s history: The vile attacks on Celtics great Bill Russell when he lived there during the 1950s.

From the Globe’s own Adam Himmelsbach’s 2017 piece Why was Boston Garden nearly empty when Bill Russell’s number was retired in 1972?

After Russell joined the Celtics in 1956, he became the city’s first black star athlete. Although he emerged as a sports icon, his status made him a more visible target. His home in the mostly white suburb of Reading was once broken into and vandalized, with a racial epithet spray-painted on the walls.

 

For some reason, Himmelsbach left out the worst part: The vandals also defecated on Russell’s bed.

Memo to Boston Globe and Boston Herald editors: When covering the Reading disgrace, remember Bill Russell.


National Grid Gives Globe the Ad, Herald the Air

November 13, 2018

From our ever-expanding Local Dailies DisAdvantage desk

The four-month National Grid lockout of over 1,200 union gas workers has not only cost the state 1) millions in lost tax revenue and 2) more than $13 million in unemployment benefits according to this WCVB report, it’s also cost the company tens of thousands of dollars for this full-page ad in today’s Boston Globe.

 

 

(Gas Workers Must Be Nuts graf goes here)

Something the ad failed to note: There’s movement at the State House to “force National Grid to restore health benefits to all locked out workers until contract talks are resolved,” according to WCVB’s report. That could ratchet up the cost of the lockout for the gas company.

Something National Grid failed to note: There are two dailies in this town. Boston Herald readers also have a nickel in this quarter. Time to give the thirsty local tabloid some love, eh?


Musicians Note Mistreatment in Plea to Josh Groban

November 9, 2018

Chalk one up for the thirsty local tabloid.

The multi-talented Josh Groban is coming to town, as Isaac Feldberg’s interview with him in today’s Boston Globe informs us.

“Bridges” is a fitting title for Josh Groban’s latest album, considering how many he has crossed in recent years . . . [S]etting out on a nationwide arena tour this fall in support of “Bridges” — with Tony-winning “Wicked” star Idina Menzel opening — feels to Groban something like slipping into a familiar old suit and discovering it still fits him neatly. Ahead of the “Believe” singer’s TD Garden stop Friday, Groban spoke from his Los Angeles home — where he was happily savoring the last days of a much-needed “staycation” with his longtime canine companion, Sweeney — about how the recent side ventures informed one of his most dynamic discs to date.

 

Not so sunny-side-up, however, is this full-page ad from today’s Boston Herald.

The We-Get-Peanuts graf:

From his Twitter feed, at least, it seems Groban can’t imagine any of it. (Don’t bother checking the Boston Musicians Twitter feed – it has all of three followers.)

If any of you splendid readers goes to the Groban shindig tonight, let us know how the vibe onstage is, wouldya? We’re guessing not too harmonious.


Los Angeles Dodgers to Boston Herald: Drop Dead

October 31, 2018

In an apparent attempt to demonstrate that they’re not sore losers, the LA ball team bought page 3 of today’s Boston Globe to run this ad.

 

 

The sure loser? The Boston Herald. Dem Bums gave the thirsty local tabloid an intentional pass.

And it wasn’t just LA that gave the Herald the air. The island of Aruba also ran a Globe-only ad today.

 

 

The tagline: One Happy Island.

Just like One Happy Daily.