Boston Globe experiments with new models and pursuits
Experimentation and new pursuits seem to be revitalizing the Boston Globe. There has been a flurry of activity since Boston Red Sox owner John Henry purchased the Boston Globe from The New York Times in October.
With the Globe bleeding revenue, its current transformation stems from Henry’s desire to find a solution for the storied Boston newspaper, as well as newspapers in general, BostonMagazine.com reported. “I feel my mortality. I don’t want to waste any of the time I have left, and I felt this was a cause worth fighting for,” he told the magazine.
Just this week, the Globe eliminated its hard paywall. The paper notably split its website into two entities in 2011 when it decided to put BostonGlobe.com behind a paywall. This is where its print edition has been available, as well as all of its top news. Meanwhile, its other site, Boston.com, has since featured weather, breaking news, blogs and photos. But earlier this week, the newspaper replaced the paywall around BostonGlobe.com with a metered wall that allows readers to access 10 free articles in a 30-day period before being asked to pay. According to a memo from Globe editor Brian McGrory, the paper plans to further separate the two sites, promoting competition between them and moving all Globe-related news content over to BostonGlobe.com. The memo says that Boston.com will remain a news site, but that it will expand with new voices (meaning new hires).
The Globe is also growing, announcing in early January that Catholic reporter and analyst John L. Allen Jr. had been nabbed by the paper, and that the possibility of a publication targeting Catholics was in the works. Meanwhile, BetaBoston.com recently made its debut as a new tech innovation site, covering life sciences, biotech, medical devices, robotics and other technology fields. The Globe is also increasing its reach into other areas. Earlier this week, the paper became available for home delivery and on newsstands in Fort Myers, Fla.
Changes are afoot at the Globe, and it will be interesting to see if Henry can indeed save the paper. Newspapers in general, however, are another story altogether.
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