Justin Martin


Bangor Daily News ‘progress edition’ promotes local businesses, advertisers

Orono, Maine — On the evening of Jan. 13, I sat down with my home-delivered copy of The Bangor Daily News. I was drawn to an historical insert detailing the pasts of seven Maine businesses between 64 and 158 years old. I opened the broadsheet.

Each of these seven businesses — among them a charter bus line, a sign manufacturer called Bangor Neon, an auto repair outfit, and a nursery and garden center — received a full page of favorable coverage. The articles detailed the rich histories of these companies, as well as the fine work they are doing today. “It was 64 years ago when a hard-working man started a small business that grew to become the local icon it is today,” the paper wrote of Bangor Neon.

Of Joe Cyr, president of John T. Cyr & Sons bus line, the paper said, “It has never been ‘all business’ for Joe; he’s always been very active in his community, serving on the boards of such institutions as St. Read more


Why Christian Science Monitor stories have too many links, wrong ones

I often don’t read my own articles in The Christian Science Monitor. The volume of hyperlinks the publication drops in their copy is just too distracting. Consider this Op-Ed on volunteerism among Millennials. Not only does it contain no fewer than 28 links, but among them are a number of highly disruptive, full-line links to Monitor content, screaming things like, “RELATED: Top 4 obstacles for young people – and how to cope.” The all-caps grabber and full-line disruption is more befitting an ad for a used-car dealer than the innards of a respected news provider.

This one article contains five full line-break links to Monitor articles, and a sixth pasted after the writer’s bio. Every one of the 28 hyperlinks connects readers to Monitor content; readers aren’t afforded a single axon to outside information. The reason the article is littered with so many hyperlinks, a Monitor editor told me, is that the publication uses a computer program which scours copy and inserts links beneath words like “Tulsa,” “Harvard,” and “Twitter,” which direct readers to past Monitor stories. Read more