Thanks to a reasonably successful buyout program and last week's layoffs of 20 editorial part-timers--including five part-time photographers--today's layoffs hit the Globe newsroom with less force than they might have otherwise.
Today's union casualties are as follows: "Names" columnist Paysha Rhone; sports copyeditor Ginger Deshaney, Globe West reporter Rachani Rathi; and business reporter Nicole Wong
Whatever your reading plans are for the next few days, make sure they include this outstanding Vanity Fair profile of NY Times publisher Arthur Ochs Sulzberger Jr. The piece, by Mark Bowden, is a terrific read. And it makes a compelling case that, given the challenges the Times and other papers are currently facing--and thanks to his conservative, Times-ian faith that good journalism is bound to succeed--Sulzberger is very much the wrong man for the job.
Some thoughts on the pay-cut program announced today by the New York Times Co., parent company of the Boston Globe:
--At the Globe, at least, management's push for a union pay cut isn't new. It was happening eight months ago. At the time, though, there was talk of a 10 percent reduction, twice what's being bandied about now.
I gravitated to this profile of Hartman--a legendary sports columnist with the Minneapolis Star-Tribune--because I grew up reading his stuff, sometimes with ironic detachment (Hartman abases/exalts himself with shameless references to "close personal friends" like Bobby Knight, and dismisses people he disagrees with as "so-called geniuses") and sometimes because I craved the insider dirt that Hartman masterfully digs up.
Dan Kennedy offers five proposals for Morrissey Boulevard, including making Boston.com the primary news vehicle (rather than the newspaper) and finding a way to get a whole lot more out of Metro Boston.
I'm not sure about Dan's second suggestion, which involves a steep increase in print-edition prices--he mentions $2 for weekdays and $5 for Sunday--and an accompanying push to add value for print purchasers and subscribers.
Just had an interesting conversation with David Mehegan, who's taking the current newsroom buyout and leaving the Globe after 33 years. Mehegan currently covers publishing and literary affairs for the paper; he's previously been book editor, a writer for the Globe's Sunday magazine, a copy editor for the op-ed pages, and a part-timer on the night desk.
Yesterday I reported that Gail Caldwell, the Globe's Pulitzer-winning book critic, was taking the latest buyout offer and exiting the paper. But she's not the only big name leaving.
Mary Jane Wilkinson, the paper's managing editor/administration, is also departing Morrissey Boulevard. While Wilkinson's name will be less familiar than Caldwell's to most readers, the internal significance of her exit will be more profound, since--along with managing editor/news Caleb Solomon--she's one of editor Marty Baron's two top lieutenants.
I'm hearing from multiple Globe sources that around 25-30 editorial staffers have applied for the latest newsroom buyout.
That's more than some people expected; as in past buyouts, a bunch of people apparently decided to jump ship just before the deadline, which was last Friday. But since the paper plans to cut 50 newsroom jobs altogether, it won't be enough to avoid substantial layoffs--which, I've been told, could begin quite soon.
If you're CNBC, how do you respond to angry allegations that you don't practice serious financial journalism?
Obviously, you stick AP's story on the recession-induced boom in adult-entertainment careers (but only for women!) on your front page, and whip up a complimentary slideshow of the best-selling adult DVDs of all time
Back when Jim Marzilli's bizarre, threatening, harrassing behavior was still big news, I argued that the Boston media weren't delving deeply enough into what was going on inside Marzilli's brain.
In the wake of this Globe story, I won't be able to make the same complaint about coverage of Christian Gerhartsreiter, a/k/a Clark Rockefeller.
You might think the Boston Herald would just ignore the recent wackiness involving Jim Aloisi, since it was triggered by that Globe scoop involving the dubious State House job held by Carol Aloisi, Jim's sister.
Not at all! Just flip to p. 18 of today's Herald, and you can read all about it. Here's the news brief in question:
As Nick Kristof notes in today's New York Times, Web-based news consumption makes it easier than ever to avoid data and ideas we don't agree with, for better or (more likely) worse:
When we go online, each of us is our own editor, our own gatekeeper. We select the kind of news and opinions that we care most about.Nicholas Negroponte of M.
When we go online, each of us is our own editor, our own gatekeeper. We select the kind of news and opinions that we care most about.
Nicholas Negroponte of M.
In which I discuss mayoral longshot Kevin McCrea's transformation from 2005 to today, and examine what effect he'll have on the Boston mayor's race.
I think that's a fair synopsis of the statement Aloisi issued today, regarding both his recent assault on the Globe and other impolitic things he's said since becoming transportation secretary. But you can judge for yourself:
I believe it is important to clear the air and move beyond the recent controversies. Since becoming Secretary of Transportation my passion for realizing the Governor's reform efforts has caused me to use language I have later regretted.
You know today's Globe story about Carol Aloisi's questionable State House job? The one that caused great dismay over at Blue Mass. Group?
Well, Jim Aloisi--the state transportation secretary, Big Dig veteran, and brother of Carol--doesn't like what the Globe wrote. Or, it seems, the way the story played out at BMG.