Boston Globe Can’t Stop Pumping for Citgo $ign

March 17, 2017

As the hardreading staff has noted in vain for the past year, the Boston Globe has reaped hundreds of thousands of dollars in Save the Citgo Sign ads. But its coverage of the rumpus over the Kenmore Square icon has never disclosed the paper’s financial interest in the outcome.

Exhibit Umpteen:  Today’s Business section story by Jon Chesto about Boston Signage Syndrome.

On Boston’s skyline, signs can be a tricky business

Jeff Immelt wanted a headquarters sign that could be seen from Mars.

Or at least that’s what the General Electric CEO jokingly told a crowd of local business leaders when he came to Boston a year ago to celebrate the company’s decision to relocate here.

Good luck with that, Jeff. The Boston Planning & Development Agency is reviewing the company’s new sign as part of broader construction plans for its future Fort Point office, and the rooftop logo will have more earthly dimensions, maybe 35 feet in diameter.

Still, the approval of a tower sign in Boston remains a rare gift, one bestowed upon a select few.

 

Among them – yes – the Globe’s own gas light.

The Citgo sign in Kenmore Square probably would never get approved today, and yet it has become a beloved landmark, one that Walsh helped save this week by refereeing lease negotiations.

 

Still, no disclosure.

Hey, Boston media watchers – don’t any of you want a piece of this?

Seriously?

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Citgo Throws a Few Pennies at the Boston Herald

May 15, 2016

As the hardreading staff has noted on numerous occasions, Citgo has lately been running quarter-page ads in the Boston Globe celebrating its Kenmore Square sign, whose future is uncertain now that Boston University is looking to sell the buildings beneath it.

Representative sample:

 

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We’ve asked Citgo’s public affairs manager Fernando Garay why the company doesn’t run ads in the Boston Herald, but he’s been a private affairs manager to us, not deigning to respond to multiple inquiries.

However . . .

Splendid reader Sam Doran has sent us this:

The print Herald may be thirsty for Citgo Sign ads, but CyberHerald’s got them. I just noticed a banner at the top of the mobile site. Two screenshots are attached. Tapping the banner led to bostoncitgosign.com (second screenshot).

 

Said screenshots:

 

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Of course, it costs pennies on the (print) dollar for Boston Herald digital ads, but no doubt the thirsty local tabloid is thankful for whatever Citgo sends its way.

Still, Citgo’s sign to the Herald (and Two-Daily Town) remains . . . the middle finger.


Citgo Sign to Two-Daily Town: The Middle Finger

May 5, 2016

As the hardreading staff has noted over the past week or so, Citgo has been running ads in the Boston Globe (but not the Boston Herald) celebrating the landmark Kenmore Square  Citgo sign, which might be endangered when Boston University sells the buildings beneath it.

Here’s yesterday’s installment of the feel-good ads.

 

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When the ads first appeared, we contacted Citgo’s public affairs manager Fernando Garay, who said he’d be glad to answer a few questions via email. So we sent him this:

Thanks for getting back to [us] so quickly, Mr. Garay.

A few questions:

Are the Boston Globe ads indeed tied to the uncertain future of the Citgo sign?

What kind of response did you get to the ads?

Have you run ads in other media outlets? Did you consider running these two in the Boston Herald?

Do you have plans to run ads in the future or expand your social media efforts beyond #CITGOsign on Twitter?

Thank you [and etc.].

 

No reply.

So we queried again.

No reply.

Finally, we sent this last night:

Dear Mr. Garay,

All due respect, but if you weren’t willing to answer [our] questions about the Citgo sign ads in the Boston Globe, why did you say “Please send me your questions via email and I will get back to you with responses”?

For the third time, [our] questions:

Are the Boston Globe ads indeed tied to the uncertain future of the Citgo sign?

What kind of response have you gotten to the ads?

Have you run ads in other media outlets? Did you consider running any in the Boston Herald?

Do you have plans to run ads in the future or expand your social media efforts beyond #CITGOsign on Twitter?

Sincerely,

[The hardreading staff]

 

Citgo: Proud to touch so many lives. Just not to answer any questions about it.


Citgo Strong? More Globe Ads to Save Landmark Sign

April 28, 2016

When we last left the Saga of the Citgo Sign, the company had run these two ads in Sunday’s Boston Globe.

 

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We thought the ads were interesting in light of the uncertain fate of the landmark Citgo sign, and we said we’d look into them further.

But splendid reader Greg Turner beat us to the punch.

Your blog post about the Citgo sign just caught my eye; I’m a BU grad and big fan of the landmark. I clicked around the web and it would appear that Citgo itself is behind the Globe ads.

The hashtag you highlighted matches up with this web page – http://www.bostoncitgosign.com/ – which has the same “Boston’s Sign logo” and the photos that are used in the ad. For example: This one and this one are in both places.

The ad campaign is obviously keeping the “petroleum corporation” part of Citgo in the background!

 

Well, that got us to contact Citgo’s public affairs manager Fernando Garay yesterday and he said he’d be glad to answer a few questions so we sent him this:

Thanks for getting back to [us] so quickly, Mr. Garay.

A few questions:

Are the Boston Globe ads indeed tied to the uncertain future of the Citgo sign?

What kind of response did you get to the ads?

Have you run ads in other media outlets? Did you consider running these two in the Boston Herald?

Do you have plans to run ads in the future or expand your social media efforts beyond #CITGOsign on Twitter?

Thank you [and etc.].

 

A day later, no word yet from Mr. Garay. But the ads did run again in today’s Globe (and not – again – in the Boston Herald).

 

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Signing off, for now . . .