Articles about "Boston Globe"


Interstate General Media to close Inquirer.com

Philadelphia Magazine

Inquirer.com and PhillyDailyNews.com, standalone websites for two newspapers owned by Interstate General Media, will soon close, Philadelphia Magazine reported Thursday.

According to a memo obtained by Philadelphia Magazine, the two sites, which feature content from The Philadelphia Inquirer and The Philadelphia Daily News, will be “folded into” one site, Philly.com:

What this means is that the standalone newspaper-branded sites will no longer exist and will instead redirect readers to Philly.com, where users will find Inquirer and Daily News journalism featured more prominently and have access to branded Inquirer and Daily News section fronts that represent the editorial voice and judgment of the newspapers.

The decision marks an end of an experiment began in April 2013, when both newspapers unveiled the subscription-based sites. The sites were designed to “reflect the papers’ personalities”

A few newspapers have released parallel free and subscription-based sites, including The San Francisco Chronicle (which maintains sfgate.com free of charge and sfchronicle.com for subscribers) and The Boston Globe (which offers boston.com for free and bostonglobe.com with a metered paywall system) Read more

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From Boston to Ferguson ‘to bear witness of this moment for our readers’

When she saw people protesting after the death of Michael Brown, when she saw the outrage and turmoil, Akilah Johnson also saw echoes of what she has seen and heard as a reporter for The Boston Globe – lack of diversity on the police force, unequal resources for poor communities, strained relationships between police and communities, the death of young black men. And it felt, to her, like something people in Boston needed to know more about.

So Johnson flew to St. Louis and headed for Ferguson to report on something that echoes in Boston.

The reason, she said, “is to bear witness of this moment for our readers.”

Johnson joins well over 100 journalists from around the U.S. and outside the country who’ve come to Ferguson to witness what’s happening.

“I would think that that’s part of the reason you’ve got media here from around the world in this moment,” she said.

From her August 18th piece for the Globe:

For the hundreds of men and women who have turned several blocks of West Florissant Avenue into a protest zone, this is the release of generations of pent-up frustration. Brown’s death had echoes of their own treatment at the hands of a police department they say does not respect black residents, who make up about 70 percent of the population in this small city in northern St. Louis County. Brown’s death resonated with them, tearing open the scars of old injustices and serving as a moment of awakening.

‘Sometimes you have to stand and fight. . . . You can’t run away from things.’

But his death also hit home far from the borders of this city. People have traveled to Ferguson from hundreds of miles away, ready to add their presence to the cause.

“For me it wasn’t so much about reporters being arrested, which was huge, or tear gassed, but you had Americans in an American city that were being tear gassed and trampled down on,” Johnson said. “I think it just kind of erupted into something that was so much more.”

OUT OF THE WAY

It rained on Saturday as Missouri Highway Patrol Captain Ron Johnson walked through a crowded street in Ferguson. Johnson shadowed his walk and watched as he responded to people bearing their grievances. Many were heated and angry.

“He responded with compassion, to be very honest,” she said. “You don’t often see police officers respond that way in volatile situations.”

On Monday, Johnson spoke with Poynter via phone as she walked down Ferguson’s Florissant Avenue. She felt tired, she said. But she’s not following the pack of journalists to most press conferences and she’s not reporting the daily news. Instead, she’s telling the stories she discovers from people around Ferguson and beyond.

“So that’s freeing for me on some levels, on a lot of levels,” she said.

Twitter has been a huge help in finding people in the community and people from her own community, like the woman who drove from Boston to be in Ferguson.

Johnson has been surprised by how open people are, that they’ll talk with a stranger.

“But people want to tell their stories,” she said. “They want to talk, they want to be heard and I’m lucky enough to be a vehicle to do that.”

There’s a variety of press in Ferguson now, she said, from independent journalists to people from big news organizations. The racial diversity of those reporters could be better, but, she said, “I think that’s a common problem, and I think it would help in terms of relateability and story framing and talking to people and putting into context what people are going through.”

At night, she reports on social media through Twitter, Instagram and Vine. Then, she’s part of the pack. It’s safer, but if she can get out of it, out of the way of so many others here reporting, that’s where she finds the best stories.

She tries to remember the line from Dr. Seuss’ “If I Ran the Zoo.”

If you want to catch beasts you don’t see every day,
You have to go places quite out-of-the-way.
You have to go places no others can get to.
You have to get cold and you have to get wet, too.

“I think there is just something singular about what’s happening here, but something universal as well,” Johnson said. “That’s why so many people are here. They feel compelled to come and bear witness to this moment.” Read more

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Boston Globe Future

Boston Globe to offer voluntary buyouts

The Boston Globe will offer voluntary buyouts to an unspecified number of employees in the next few days, according to emails obtained by Poynter.

“There’s no set number we’re trying to achieve. Most significantly, it’s not meant as a cost-cutting exercise in the newsroom. In fact, when all is said and done, I don’t expect staffing levels here to change much, if at all,” Globe Editor Brian McGrory wrote.

It is the first round of layoffs since the paper came under the ownership of Boston Red Sox owner John Henry in October 2013, according to the Boston Business Journal.

The last round of layoffs at the Globe happened in July 2012 when 10 people were laid off and 43 employees — including 20 in the newsroom — were offered buyouts.

Since January 2013, the Globe has added 250 employees in the first six months of 2014, circulation and advertising revenue are “ahead of plan,” according to an email to employees from Mike Sheehan, the newspaper’s chief executive. Regional coverage recently went from twice a week to once a week, according to an employee.

“We can’t keep doing things just because we’ve always done them,” McGrory said in his email. “We need to be ever bold in the way we think about the journalism ahead.”

Here are the emails from Globe leadership

From: “Sheehan, Mike”
Subject: Voluntary Buyout Packages

Over the past two years, there have been a number of significant changes at the Boston Globe: a new owner, a new editor, and new leadership in a number of departments. Since January 2013, we’ve added a number of new people as well — 250, to be precise. These key hires are helping us create a media property whose commitment to excellence in journalism is second to none in New England, and on par with the best in the business globally. They’ve allowed us to improve the quality of our offerings across the board and to introduce initiatives like Address and Capital in print, a re-imagined boston.com, plus Betaboston.com and Crux, the new Catholic digital site which will launch in a few weeks. On the business side, our efforts are paying off — after the first six months of 2014, our circulation and advertising revenue are both ahead of plan, which reflects the enthusiasm of readers, visitors, and advertisers.

Our mission of creating award-winning journalism that’s “aggressively interesting” is only realized if we create a business model that’s sound and eminently sustainable. To reposition our business for the future, we have decided to offer some employees a buyout, voluntary in nature, the terms of which are generous by any standard. These employees will receive a letter at home over the next few days outlining specific terms.

We will continue to adapt and change, to stay ahead of the market and our competitors. We will continue to recruit and hire and explore new initiatives. But we will do so with financial discipline and rigor.

While the letters will be detailed and thorough, if you have any questions, feel free to ask me, your supervisor, or anyone in Human Resources.

All the best,

Mike

From: “McGrory, Brian”
Subject: Buyouts

Following up on Mike’s note, I’d like to offer my assessment on what this means for the newsroom.

Thankfully, this newsroom has embraced necessary change since the dawn of boston.com in 1995, right up through the new sections and sites we’ve introduced over the past year, with our most ambitious undertakings yet to come. This innovative spirit has allowed us to be one of the most successful papers in the nation in terms of digital subscriptions. It has allowed us to deliver our stories and images to readers in bold new ways. It has allowed us to rack up awards of every stripe. It’s also allowed us to beat financial forecasts over the first half of this year.

But change, as you well know, rarely comes easy, or at least not easily enough. It means making difficult decisions on what facets of our journalism we need to curtail to allow more investment in what we believe is most important to our readers. In other words, we can’t keep doing things just because we’ve always done them. We need to be ever bold in the way we think about the journalism ahead.

With that in mind, this buyout is different than many that have come before, in terms of what it means for our operation. For starters, it’s more generous (the details will be in the packets). There’s no set number we’re trying to achieve. Most significantly, it’s not meant as a cost-cutting exercise in the newsroom. In fact, when all is said and done, I don’t expect staffing levels here to change much, if at all. We’ll see growth in some areas as we’ll see cutbacks in others. Hiring will continue. The goal of this buyout is flexibility, to allow us to devote people with just the right talents to the areas where we need them most.

That’s not to say there won’t be difficult moments in this process. We’ll undoubtedly be saying goodbye to talented colleagues who have committed themselves to this great institution.

My take, no spin, is that this is an exciting endeavor – certainly fortuitous for those inclined to leave for retirement or a new venture, and absolutely for the newsroom at large, as we continue to strategically invest in the excellent journalism that you produce every day. I’m available, as always, to talk this through, and so are your department heads. Don’t hesitate to come by.

Brian

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1940-2014: Michael Janeway, former editor of The Boston Globe, The Atlantic Monthly

The Boston Globe | The Atlantic

Michael Janeway, former editor of The Boston Globe and executive editor of The Atlantic Monthly, died Thursday at his home in Lakeville, Conn., at age 73.

The Globe’s Joseph P. Kahn quoted author Todd Gitlin on Janeway’s career:

“When Mike saw journalism slipping off the edge into inconsequence or superficiality, he was on the case,” Gitlin said. “He recognized it was a matter of moment to the political life of democracy. I see him as a standard-bearer for professional journalism, a connoisseur of the nobility of intellectual life and journalism’s responsibility to honor it.”

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Boston.com unveils responsive redesign as it begins competing with the Globe

Boston.com has freshened up for the spring, making it better prepared to compete across all platforms against its paywalled big brother BostonGlobe.com, a responsive pioneer.

The free news source’s responsive site is now in beta on both mobile and desktop, according to a press release. (Baseball fans will get a kick out of Boston.com’s new error page.)

Last year, Globe editor Brian McGrory told Poynter about his plan to “untangle” the company’s two websites, saying the difference between them wasn’t clear to “many people in this community and people in this newsroom.” Read more

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Boston Globe owner John Henry names himself publisher

Boston Globe

John Henry, the principal owner of the Boston Red Sox who purchased the Boston Globe from the New York Times Co. in October, has named himself publisher of the newspaper.

That makes the third owner in the newspaper’s 141-year history the newspaper’s ninth publisher, too, according to a press release. Henry has also appointed Boston advertising executive Mike Sheehan as CEO. Sheehan was previously a sports editor and reporter before he entered advertising. Read more

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Boston Globe’s Wesley Lowery joins Washington Post

Boston Globe reporter Wesley Lowery will join the Washington Post, where he’ll cover Congress and politics.

While at Ohio University, Lowery, who is 23, tracked down the administrator info of a website raising funds for George Zimmerman’s defense, and apparently corresponded with Zimmerman himself. He was editor-in-chief of The Post at Ohio University, and did internships at The Detroit News, The Columbus Dispatch, The Wall Street Journal and the Globe.

He was at the Los Angeles Times as a reporting fellow before joining the Globe, where he covered the Boston Marathon bombings and their aftermath and the Aaron Hernandez case. Read more

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Boston.com: Boston Globe purchase official

Businessman John Henry has completed his purchase of The Boston Globe, according to a Boston.com story posted Thursday.

Henry’s purchase includes the Globe, Boston.com, BostonGlobe.com, Worcester Telegram & Gazette and the Telegram’s website.

The sale had been delayed by a labor dispute, but a Worcester Superior Court judge cleared the way for the deal to go through, according to Boston.com.

Henry is owner of several sports organizations, including the Red Sox and New England Sports Network. The acquisition ends the 20-year ownership of The Boston Globe by The New York Times Co.

Related: Suit holding up sale of The Boston Globe started with a broken windowLabor dispute holds up Boston Globe sale | 7 things to know about The Boston Globe’s sale to John Henry Read more

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Women working in office.

Software seeks to measure women’s participation in journalism

Measuring women’s participation in journalism once meant sitting down with a stack of newspapers and counting bylines by hand. That’s no longer the case, thanks to computer programs that use big data to examine gender biases in sourcing, story placement and even retweets.

The results so far are grim, with women remaining chronically underrepresented in many aspects of news. But the creators of the new tools hope the information they collect will help journalists assess their habits, and perhaps change them.

Each piece of software works a bit differently, but the basic concepts are similar: Computers comb through online articles and compare the names of authors and sources with databases that determine if those names are likely male or female. The results aren’t perfect, but they can reveal broad patterns.

“They might not be as accurate as thousands of people looking over articles by hand over a period of five years, but they can give you a rough check before you hit that publish button,” said Nathan Matias, a graduate student at MIT’s Media Lab and Center for Civic Media.

Tracking gender at the Boston Globe and New York Times

Matias is collaborating with an open-Web consulting company on the Open Gender Tracker Project, which he hopes will be used to measure gender balance in traditional journalism, citizen media and advocacy organizations. Matias decided to examine gender after reading an article in the Guardian about the lack of female commentators on British TV.

“I  was personally shocked by how little of a voice women had in UK news,” he said.

The Gender Tracker team has already tested its software at The Boston Globe and with the citizen media network Global Voices, where they discovered some surprising results. Women wrote just over half the posts on Global Voices, a difference from traditional news organizations where female authors are usually in the minority.

Matais is looking for other organizations — newsrooms, blog networks and advocacy organizations — that want to examine gender in the content they produce.

Andrew Briggs, meanwhile, has focused his computer-powered counting on a single news organization: The New York Times. Briggs, a recent graduate of Northwestern University, launched whowritesfor.com earlier this summer. The website uses scraping software to provide a running gender count of bylines that appear on the homepage of NYTimes.com. (In July Jezebel looked at Briggs’s efforts and examined a study unveiled on Poynter about a lack of female sources at the Times.)

The daily results — which show male authors tend to dominate — are interesting, but Briggs says the real benefits have yet to emerge. He’s looking for trends in the data, and hopes his efforts will come to the attention of newsroom leaders at the Times.

“The New York Times has both Margaret Sullivan and Jill Abramson, who are very capable, very intelligent and very aware that there’s this disparity,” Briggs said. “I think it would be nice to see [this software] used by them to kind of close the gap.”

Gathering data is just the start

What about gender biases beyond news organizations? How does social media affect the reach of women’s voices? That’s one of the questions that inspired Twee-Q, which launched in Sweden last year.

Visitors to Twee-Q’s website can enter a Twitter handle and find out the gender breakdown of retweets from that account. In my case, the results were eye-opening. I spend a lot of time thinking about gender, and follow plenty of smart women on Twitter — but that doesn’t mean I’m amplifying what they say. According to Twee-Q, the people I’ve retweeted lately are 64 percent male.

Twee-Q also maintains a tally of results that show men are more likely to have their comments retweeted despite the fact that the majority of Twitter users are women.

Gathering this kind of data is just the start for journalists committed to greater diversity, said Kelly McBride, a senior faculty member at the Poynter Institute who specializes in ethics. Newsroom managers must use these new tools as platforms for deep analysis of institutional biases.

McBride finds the gender gap in front-page bylines especially troubling because of what it says about broader newsroom inequalities.

“That’s just evidence of a system that clearly is not giving women the same opportunities that are given to men, and that has huge implications,” she said. “We know that leaders in newsrooms are chosen from people who are good at doing very specific things.”

Are women fully considered for the beats that traditionally lead to promotions, big projects and prominent story placement? Are they included in important meetings? Do they feel empowered to speak up?

“What [the data] can’t tell you is why,” she said. “What are the small, systematic decisions you’re making every day?”

While it’s important to create a culture in which women with small children can excel, McBride said news organizations should also reconsider the role of older women. Women in their 40s and 50s are likely past the most time-consuming period of child-rearing, but may not be perceived as good candidates for promotion because they took less-prestigious beats when their children were young. Many of these women, though, may still have the skills to lead.

“If you can bring more women into leadership, you can affect all of these smaller decisions,” McBride said. Read more

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