Globe Cries ‘Uncle’, Goes Back to Old Distributor

January 6, 2016

Rule #1: Don’t trust anything Boston Globe executives say these days.

Exhibit A: Here’s what Globe CEO Mike Sheehan said on WGBH’s Greater Boston Monday night:

Mike Sheehan: Part of those options we’re considering are dividing up those [undelivered] areas and bringing in some other distributors to help and getting this solved very very fast.

Jim Braude: You couldn’t undo this and just go back to the prior company?

MS: No – no, ACI is doing a very good job in certain geographies.

 

Then again, there’s this in today’s lately local broadsheet:

Globe splits deliveries between two companies

globe-big

After more than a week of confounding problems getting newspapers to subscribers, The Boston Globe has turned to its former distribution partner to handle about half of its home deliveries across the region, Globe chief executive officer Mike Sheehan said on Tuesday.

The deal with Publishers Circulation Fulfillment Inc. follows an unexpectedly difficult rollout for the Globe’s new distribution firm, ACI Media Group Inc., which left tens of thousands of newspapers undelivered in its first week after taking over distribution within the Boston region on Dec. 28.

 

So, to recap: The Globe tore the sheets with former distributor Publishers Circulation Fulfillment in order to hook up with new squeeze (the drivers) ACI Media, but now the Globe and PCF are friends with benefits.

Not to get technical about it, but Mike Sheehan seems to be telling the truth a little bit at a time.

Rule #2: Don’t expect the Boston Herald to tell you anything about the Globe delivery meltdown.

Once again, the fraidy local tabloid is a day late, dolor short. Ignoring a major malfunction by your crosstown rival is not just bad journalism, it’s bad business. But at least they’re consistent.

Rule #3: Don’t expect the Globe’s publisher to stand the gaffe.

After a long hibernation, Boston GlobeSox owner John Henry – finally – weighs in today with this mealy-mouthed Letter From the Publisher.

We apologize to our loyal readers

kreiter_globiesdeliver22_met-1471

The Globe’s responsibility to this community is to bring it the news. I would like to share some news now about why we have failed to meet this objective for many readers over the past 10 days, how we are working to fix the problems, and a bit about the root causes.

First, I want to personally apologize to every Boston Globe subscriber who has been inconvenienced. We recognize that you depend on us, and that we’ve let you down. We’re working around the clock on a variety of fronts to solve this. To that end, I also want to thank everyone at the Globe who pitched in to get some 20,000 Sunday papers delivered last weekend.

Getting a daily newspaper to your front door is a complicated exercise in logistics .  . .

 

And blah blah blah . . .

Helpful hint: Wear asbestos glove while reading the comments.

Rule the Last: When the paper you own goes Chernobyl, don’t turtle for 10 days, then tell us how tough your job is. It’s just not manly.

UPDATE: Totally forgot (since it’s become so routine) – no Globe today. The “delivery delay” list is down to 91, but the hardlyreading staff is still on it.

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Why Boston Globe ‘Capital’ with an A?

August 8, 2014

It’s been a couple of months since the Boston Globe launched its weekly section Capital, and for the most part it seems pretty fat (12 pages) and happy (exuberant layouts). The only thing even vaguely controversial about the sections is the spelling of its name.

Globe editor Brian McGrory has a running gag with Jim Braude and Margery Eagan on WGBH radio about why it’s Capital with an a not an o. McGrory keeps wriggling out of revealing the paper’s reasons, but here are three possible ones from today’s edition.

 

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Would those ads likely have run in the A or B section if there were no Capital? Probably. But you have to believe a section geared toward political junkies is a more appealing environment for all three advertisers. For the first two, it’s obvious. For Steward Health Care, it’s a bit more oblique.

From Bruce Mohl’s CommonWealth piece last month on why Steward “is missing from the group of health care competitors that have banded together to fight the consent agreement negotiated by Partners HealthCare and Attorney General Martha Coakley”:

Some think the company decided to sit this one out because of its close ties to Coakley. The attorney general in 2010 approved the acquisition by Cerberus/Steward of six Caritas Christi hospitals owned by the Boston archdiocese. Coakley also retains some regulatory oversight over Steward, including a say in whether the health care system can shut down any of its hospitals.

Steward executives, led by CEO Ralph de la Torre, gave big to Coakley when she ran for the US Senate in 2010 and ponied up again earlier this year as she mounted her run for governor. Campaign finance records indicate de la Torre and his wife Wing led a group of Steward executives and spouses who made $500 donations to Coakley on February 26. More Steward officials contributed to Coakley in late March.

In all, Steward executives have contributed more than $18,000 to Coakley since late last year. No other health care system has taken such an interest in the gubernatorial campaign, which may help explain why Steward is less interested in the legal fight over the Partners expansion plans.

 

Interesting. But back to the original question: Why Capital with an a? Maybe because that’s what it hauls in.

P.S. Needless to say, none of the above ads ran in the Boston Herald.


Margery Eagan to Boston Globe

July 30, 2014

Boston Herald columnist Margery Eagan is taking her talents crosstown to the Boston Globe’s Catholic website, according to Two-Daily Town sources.  She’ll join the vertical the Globe established for John L. Allen Jr., former correspondent for the National Catholic Reporter.

The feisty local tabloid will be significantly less feisty without Eagan, who’s never been shy about weighing in on all matters Cathoholic.

Check out Boston Public Radio on WGBH radio this afternoon for further details from Globe editor Brian McGrory.

And all best, Margery.

UPDATE: Here’s the Globe press release.

Margery Eagan Named Spirituality Columnist For Crux, A New Website Covering Catholicism

BOSTON (July 30, 2014) – Margery Eagan, a well-known Boston columnist and radio talk show host, will become the spirituality columnist for Crux, a website devoted to Catholicism being launched by Boston Globe Media Partners in early September.

Eagan has been a columnist at the Boston Herald since the early 1980s, interrupted by a stint as a senior writer at Boston Magazine. She will continue to co-host “Boston Public Radio,” a daily current events talk show, with Jim Braude on WGBH Radio (89.7 FM).

In her column for Crux, Eagan will explore issues of spirituality, contemplation, and devotion, drawing on her personal experience with her Catholic faith, as well as that of other Catholics and those of various religious traditions.

“Margery has had a longstanding fascination with issues around spirituality and has spent no small part of her adult life exploring deep issues involving her Catholic faith,” said Globe editor Brian McGrory. “We couldn’t be more delighted to add her smart, engaging voice to our strong roster of reporters and columnists that will be the backbone of this new site.”

Crux will be a standalone website that covers the institution of the church, with particular focus on how the words and actions of Pope Francis affect Catholics worldwide. It will delve into the practices and challenges of living a Catholic life, and publish the wide-ranging thoughts and opinions of Catholics and others. It will be found atwww.cruxnow.com. Readers can follow Crux on Twitter, @Crux, and Facebook,facebook.com/crux.

Teresa Hanafin, editor of the new site, said Eagan’s exploration of her own spirituality through retreats and extensive reading will add a valuable dimension to Crux. “There are many, many Catholics who engage in a very deep, spiritual examination of their faith and their personal relationship with God,” Hanafin said. “Margery is of that world. She understands it, she experiences it, and now she will discuss it with the readers of Crux.”

A native of Fall River, Massachusetts, Eagan received a bachelor’s degree in American Studies from Stanford University. She has written for the Fall River Herald News, the New Bedford Standard Times, the Burlington Free Press in Vermont, Boston Magazine, and the Globe. She has appeared on CNN and Fox News, and is a regular panelist on “Beat the Press,” a media criticism show that is part of the “Greater Boston” public affairs show on WGBH television.

 


Herald Romes Much Farther Than Globe

March 20, 2013

It’s a rare day – and therefore a noteworthy one – when the Boston Herald devotes more resources to a big story than the Boston Globe does.

Welcome to today’s edition of our feisty local tabloid gone global. Note the dateline on Margery Eagan’s column:

Vatican PopePope Francis fever catches on in Rome

ROME — The Roman Catholic Church has been losing the faithful in Italy and much of Europe for decades. Pope Francis has clearly revived interest, if only until his novelty wears off.

Yesterday, for the third time in a week, an estimated 150,000 packed St. Peter’s Square. Police were keeping order in subway stations en route to the Vatican as crowds tried to push onto nearly full trains. Streets all around the Vatican were closed to traffic. But they were filled with what looked like thousands more spectators who showed up too late to fit into the square — meaning they didn’t get here by 7:30 a.m. for a 9:30 a.m. Mass.

These thousands watched on at least a dozen Jumbotrons as Pope Francis, just before his inaugural Mass, rode about the square not in the bulletproof glass popemobile, but, unusually, in an open-air model. It allowed him to get on and off and kiss a baby and the forehead of a man who appeared disabled and smiled up at Francis’ face.

 

Today’s Herald also features a thumbsucker on Sean O’Malley’s elevated status after his waltz with the Great Mentioner at the Vatican conclave.

Vatican PopeObservers see O’Malley as papal adviser

Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley will return to Boston this week a more influential figure than when he left for the papal conclave late last month — with international name recognition, and possibly the prospect of a role in Rome as Pope Francis aligns his inner circle, religious experts said.

“My sense is that Sean O’Malley is happy in Boston and would not be happy at the Vatican. On the other hand, he is a close friend of Pope Francis. I wouldn’t be surprised if he has a role for Cardinal O’Malley,” said Thomas Groome, a theology professor at Boston College. “He’ll have a more enhanced role in advising and leadership than he did under Benedict. He certainly is coming home with an enhanced reputation.”

National Catholic Reporter’s John Allen Jr., whose article on O’Malley prior to the conclave helped elevate the Boston archbishop’s profile, said O’Malley has been rumored to take over as leader of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, which manages the rules governing priests and nuns.

Meanwhile, crosstown at the Globe, today’s edition included only this on the pontiff front:

2013-03-19T141110Z_01_MBH11_RTRMDNP_3_POPEAt inaugural, Pope Francis vows to serve poor

Urges those in power to protect world

By Elisabetta Povoledo, Rachel Donadio and Alan Cowell |  NEW YORK TIMES     MARCH 20, 2013

VATICAN CITY — At the formal start of his papacy, Pope Francis offered a passionate pledge Tuesday to serve ‘‘the poorest, the weakest, the least important,’’ striking the same tones of humility that have marked the days since he was elected last week.

On a raised and canopied throne on a platform looking out from St. Peter’s Basilica to the piazza in front of it, the pope enjoined those in temporal power to protect the world and ‘‘not allow omens of destruction and death to accompany the advance of this world.’’

“Today, too, amid so much darkness, we need to see the light of hope and to be men and women who bring hope to others,’’ he added to frequent applause from some among the tens of thousands of people cramming the square and the broad avenue leading to it from the River Tiber. The Vatican estimated the number at 150,000 to 200,000.

 

A story plucked from the New York Times wire service?  Kinda pales in comparison with the Herald, eh?

It’s possible-to-likely the paper is splitting the cost of Eagan’s Roman gig with WGBH (where she co-hosts a radio show with Jm Braude), since she’s also reported on the papal festivities for 89.7 FM.

Either way, it’s the Herald that’s the papal tiger on this story.


Herald’s Inside Trick: Credit Defaults

January 6, 2013

The hardreading staff has noted before the occasional tendency of the Boston Herald’s Track Gals (without Megan!) to borrow material without disclosing their sources.

Sad to say, they’re back at it again today.

From the Inside Track’s We Hear section:

• That Jim Braude and Margery Eagan, late of News Talk 96.9, will guest host for two hours on 89.7 WGBH Radio on Tuesday beginning at noon. The pair — he hosts a show on NECN and she is a Herald columnist — will host a segment within the midday show of live, local talk, according to their old WTKK boss Phil Redo, who just so happens to be managing director of ’GBH Radio. Tryout? Do stay tuned.

 

From yesterday’s Boston Globe:

Former WTKK hosts get one-day gig at WGBH

Two days after they hosted the final talk show broadcast on WTKK-FM, Jim Braude and Margery Eagan have lined up a one-day gig on WGBH-FM that could double as an audition.

WGBH said Friday that the former WTKK morning show hosts will guest host “Boston Public Radio” Jan. 8, filling in for Callie Crossley, Emily Rooney and Kara Miller.

Braude and Eagan hosted the last episode of “Jim & Margery” Wednesday before the station switched to an all-music format.

The pair has no other assignments booked on WGBH, but the station’s managing director, Phil Redo, suggested in an e-mail that there could be more to come.

“I’m a big fan of theirs,” said Redo, who managed WTKK and four other Greater Media Inc. stations in Boston from 2006 to 2009 . . .

 

Not to get technical about it, but next time the Track Gals should File Under: “We Read.”


Howie Carr’s WTKK Drive-By

December 29, 2012

Boston Herald columnist/WRKO squawker Howie Carr is experiencing an extreme bout of Howenfreude over the demise of FM talk station WTKK. (Full disclosure: The hardreading staff did a weekly segment on the Jim & Margery show.)

Today’s triumphant nyah-nyah from Carr:

PL6Q0092.JPGTalk radio’s not dead, just moonbats’ radio

WTKK wouldn’t be turning off the lights next week if I could have just gotten over there back in 2007. No brag, just fact. And by the way, I’m still damn sorry I didn’t make good my escape from the AM band.

But here in Massachusetts, in the halls of justice, the only justice is in the halls. And you wonder why I dismember so many state judges. Payback is a bitch, you hacks.

Still, WTKK’s failure is not the end of talk radio in Boston. Nature abhors a vacuum, and having no talk station on FM is a gaping hole. Less than 20 percent of the radio audience ever listens to AM radio — and it’s a mighty old audience, too. They don’t call it “Ancient Modulation” for nothing.

 

In his gleeful victory dance, however, Carr gets his feet all tangled up.

Harry Truman used to say, “If you give people a choice between a Republican and a Republican, they’ll vote for the Republican every time.”

Here’s WTKK’s epitaph: “If you give listeners a choice between NPR and NPR, they’ll pick NPR every time.”

Sorry, Jim and Margery, nobody was giving up “All Things Considered” for you guys.

 

First of all, what Harry Truman actually said was this: “Given the choice between a Republican and someone who acts like a Republican, people will vote for the real Republican all the time.” That makes sense, as opposed to Carr’s mushbrained quote.

Second, Jim and Margery are up against “Morning Edition,” not “All Things Considered.”

Not to get technical about it.

Crosstown at the Boston Globe, the Namesniks have  a slightly kinder – and slightly more optimistic – take.

WTKK to abandon talk radio for music

For an all-talk station, the folks at WTKK aren’t saying much. But we’re told the rumors are true: News Talk 96.9 FM is ditching its lineup of loudmouths in favor of music. The format change, which will take place right after the new year, means no more Michael Graham, who was sent packing last Friday, or midday host Doug Meehan, who actually left Boston a few weeks ago, or Rick Shaffer, cohost of the weekend “Money Show.” We’re told Jim Braude and Margery Eagan will be on the air as usual Wednesday morning, but that will be their last day at WTKK. Fans of “Jim and Margery” will be happy to learn, however, that they’re very likely to show up elsewhere on your radio dial sometime soon. No word on what sort of music 96.9 will be playing, but let’s hope it’s more soothing than Graham’s rants.

 

Or Howie Carr’s, for that matter.