Boston Globe Looks for Subscribers . . . in the Herald

April 9, 2021

Well the hardreading staff was clicking through the Boston Herald’s E-Edition at our usual brisk pace when what should we come across but this.

 

 

Wait, what? The stately local broadsheet has taken to the feisty local tabloid to goose its circulation?

Get. Out.

The Globe’s virtual slumming comes at an interesting crisscross(road) for the paper, as illustrated by this graph from the Boston Business Journal.

As the BBJ’s crack managing editor Don Seiffert wrote last winter, it’s always smart to follow the money.

The Globe’s digital circulation has been the envy of regional daily newspapers nationwide in the past couple of years. It was one of the first papers in the nation to have more online subscribers than print ones last year.

The Globe has also raised its print prices to as much as $1,300 a year for some weekday subscribers, which may have accelerated the switch from print to digital. Some have even speculated that forcing readers to switch to online-only, thereby saving the business money, may be an intentional strategy.

Here’s a question, though: How does it make sense to trade a (potentially) $1300 a year print subscriber for a $360 a year digital subscriber? Not to mention, those departing print subscribers mean reduced print ad revenue as well.

Asking for a friend.

Meanwhile, the redoubtable Dan Kennedy at Media Nation provided this update on the Globe’s Fall 2020 circulation numbers, which included roughly 220,000 digital-only subscribers.

Paid print Friday circulation was down to 81,579 as of early September, lower than the 12-month average by about 1,500. A similar slide was reported in the publisher’s statement that appeared on Sunday: print circulation was 139,307 as of Sept. 6, down nearly 10,000 from the 12-month average.

But, Kennedy also notes, “Like many papers, the Globe has been signing up new subscribers at a steep discount. The challenge will be holding onto them once they are asked to re-up at the full rate of $30 a month.”

Which, as best we can tell, is the highest digital subscription rate – by far – of any major metro newspaper in the country.

That’s a whole nother challenge.

Meanwhile, the thirsty local tabloid is downright parched these days, as the BBJ’s Don Seiffert noted several months ago.

The Herald, owned by Denver-based MediaNews Group since March 2018, said in a filing with the Alliance for Audited Media that its total weekday print circulation over the six months from April to September [of 2020] averaged 24,540 per day. That’s down from 34,219 in the same six month span in 2019 — a 28% drop in a single year.

Even more knee-buckling: “Over the six months from April to September [of 2020], single-copy sales of the Herald averaged 12,619 per day, according to the filing. Last year, the average from April to September was 21,331 — a 41% drop.”

Even more knee-buckling: The Herald’s digital subscriptions at the same time were somewhere south of 10,000.

So any advertising revenue is welcome at the scrawny local tabloid – even from the hately local broadsheet.


Fraidy Local Tabloid Won’t Cover the Boston Globe

April 10, 2016

What’s with the Boston Herald?

As the hardreading staff noted last month, the Herald resolutely refused to cover the Boston Globe’s Chernobylesque home delivery meltdown earlier this year. The Globe itself labeled it a “delivery debacle,” which we wrote “should be mother’s milk to the thirsty local tabloid but . . . nothing.”

Now comes the juicy memo from Globe editor Brian McGrory (first reported on Thursday in the redoubtable Dan Kennedy’s Media Nation) announcing a “no-sacred-cows analysis of our newsroom and what the Globe should look like in the future.”

McGrory framed it this way: “If a wealthy individual [who, presumably, is not John Henry] was to give us funding to launch a news organization designed to take on The Boston Globe, what would it look like?”

Regardless, don’t you want to hear the flamey local tabloid’s answer to that question? But over the past few days the Heraldniks have given us . . . bupkis.

Some speculate that the Herald has been laying off the Globe because the Globe prints the Herald. But that deal’s been in effect for three years and didn’t keep Herald columnist Howie Carr from lambasting the Globe for its Tsarnaev brothers coverage.

So why is the feisty local tabloid AWOL now?

All suggestions gladly accepted.


Boston Herald Fails to Deliver on Globe for 10th Day

January 5, 2016

As one of the Boston Herald’s 17 home subscribers, the hardreading staff has been waiting patiently for the feisty local tabloid to crow about its successful delivery of the paper while the Boston Globe’s home delivery has gone Chernobyl.

But . . . nothing.

And today . . . still nothing.

Your fraidy local tabloid’s Tuesday Business section.

 

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As WGBH’s Unsinkable Emily Rooney (and our former partner in airtime) has written, “The Boston Herald has disgracefully reneged it’s [sic] journalistic duty to report this story for one simple reason, The Globe butters the Herald’s bread by being its printer.”

Then again, as Globe reporter Maria Cramer said on WBUR’s Radio Boston yesterday, the Herald has never been shy before about smacking the Globe around.

So why now?

Hey, Herald house harridan Howie Carr(toon): Wanna weigh in on this?

As opposed to your latest mailed-in column?

Or maybe you’re fraidy, too.

P.S. Oh, yeah – the Globe failed to deliver today’s paper to the hardlyreading staff (we’re now 4-for-9 in the Big Meltdown). And the “delivery delay” list is currently at 113. Burt here’s the funny thing: Globe CEO went on WGBH’s Greater Boston last night and said the really serious delivery problems are in Newton and Pembroke. Except . . . Pembroke isn’t even on the list today. Geez – these people can screw up a screw up.


Boston 2024: The Grift That Keeps on Giving

June 11, 2015

As you splendid readers well know, the Boston news media – from the Boston Business Journal to WGBH to Boston Magazine to WBUR to the Boston Globe – are on Store 2024 like Brown on Williamson.

But not the Boston Herald.

Sure, the feisty local tabloid has provided some basic coverage of the five-ring monte Olympic bid, but it’s not breaking news the way other local outlets have. The Herald these days is more about Deval Patrick’s financial shenanigans.

Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

Exhibit A: Yesterday’s Joe Battenfeld column.

Patrick Secretly Diverted Junket Cash

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Former Gov. Deval Patrick’s administration secretly diverted nearly $27 million in public money to off-budget accounts that paid for a $1.35 million trade junket tab, bloated advertising contracts, and a deal with a federally subsidized tourism venture backed by U.S. Sen. Harry Reid, a Herald investigation has found.

The maneuver to fatten the hidden “trust” 

accounts with millions from state quasi-public agencies allowed Patrick to skirt the state Legislature and evade state budget cutbacks during the recession, the Herald found.

 

Elsewhere in the piece, the number seems to be over $37 million. Helpful chart:

 

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Whatever.

Exhibit B: Today’s Herald page 5 (with bonus Inexplicable Green 1).

 

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See? Even the paper’s Olympic coverage is part of its Devalue Pak.

Meanwhile, the latest Boston NOlympics revelations include this in the BBJ, which suggests that those expecting the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority to “save the Boston Olympics” Must Be Taking Acid. The Boston Globe contributes this front-page piece about Boston 2024 relocating the Widett Circle food wholesalers to the Seaport (one really smart person we know thinks the entire Boston 2024 effort is just a land grab to develop the New Boston Food Market site). The Globe also features this Metro piece about the full-court press on the Boston 2024 organizers to finally get down to specifics.

WBUR also has a couple of new reports today about bigger Olympic footprints, and WGBH tosses in this piece about new venues and public relations.

But the Boston Herald? Call it the shelfie local tabloid.


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.


Globe Still Has Memorial Ad-vantage Over Herald (‘Buck’ Bay Association Edition)

May 6, 2013

The post-Boston Marathon bombings ads continue to gravitate toward our stately local broadsheet.

For starters, the Boston Sunday Globe featured this half-page ad:

 

Picture 1

 

Topping that was this full-page ad in the same edition:

 

Picture 2

 

Notice the sponsors: The Buck – sorry, Back Bay Association and the Newbury Street League.

Funny, but neither ad ran in Sunday’s Boston Herald.

The feisty local tabloid might want to look here for the reason.


You CAN Judge a Daily by Its Cover

March 29, 2013

From our Compare ‘n’ Contrast desk

The front pages of today’s local dailies are perfect representations of where they stand in relation to one another – and their readers.

Boston Globe:

 

Picture 1

 

Boston Herald:

 

Picture 2

 

That tells you all you need to know about our feisty local tabloid. Long may it rain . . . on all our parades.