Even in Death, BostonNOW Gets it Wrong

1208196632Word came down today that BostonNOW, the free commuter daily powered by free labor, Scientology-worship, and and a charming inability to spell words like “Israel” correctly, is shutting its doors.

Admittedly, it is bad karma to laugh when a print publication goes down, considering the likelihood that, at some point reasonably soon, every print journalist in Boston will be out of work. But let’s see you read the appallingly self-aggrandizing (and factually inaccurate) farewell letter NOW posted on its site today, and not start taking some cheap shots.

BostonNOW’s editorial content,” reads the un-bylined story, “especially its strong local reporting, has been picked up dozens of times by Boston’s paid dailies and TV outlets. The Economist magazine lauded BostonNOW in January as one of the finest free dailies in the United States.”

Hmm, we thought, as we read this. Sounds a little suspicious.

So, we found the 358-word Economist piece (titled “Reading the Metro“), and indeed, found that the estimable English magazine used only the most, er, glowing terms to describe the upstart NOW: “Metro‘s papers may not be giving American readers what they want. AM New York, a free daily that competes with Metro New York, has done well by focusing on local coverage. The newer BostonNOW is attempting to do the same thing.”

That’s it.

As for NOW being cited dozens of times by the dailies, that doesn’t seem to be right either. A Nexis search turns up four results for “BostonNOW” and none of them refer to a story NOW has broken, or to content provided by the paper. There are a couple of stories about the paper as a business, but not so much as a source of news or content. We can’t speak to TV, but this seems to be a case of NOW harboring a sense of self-importance that verges on, let’s say, “the Scientological.” (And it’s not the first time.)

And as if they hadn’t laid it on thick enough, here’s the kicker:

“Management’s primary concern right now is to help its suddenly displaced employees, who from scratch have created one of the most respected new dailies in the USA, find good newspaper and media work as soon as possible. A series of interviews, both on premises and off, are being set up with local media companies.”

… additionally, FEMA is being called in to help cope with this immense tragedy.

  • anonymous

    But what will happen to those shiny red boxes?

  • Ron Newman

    Even though the article was less than perfect, Anonymous appreciated seeing it on the front cover last Friday. Any publicity for the cause being good publicity right now.

  • http://www.udick.com Haroldinho Reclaima

    no need to kick them more, they’re down – and out.

  • anonh20

    At least they covered the Scientology issues in Boston, something this publication has failed to do. But I guess it’s easier to mock failing publications than report on stories that may become controversial.

  • Alex H.

    Kicking sand in the eyes of a downed opponent? That’s hardly becoming.

    I’d like to agree with others here and say at least BostonNOW had the journalistic courage to cover the Anonymous vs. Scientology story not once but twice.

    You can’t be a member of the global village and not find the battle between the Internet and Scientology absolutely fascinating. It would behoove you to cover this issue rather than mocking and dismissing those that do.

  • Antipode

    Cheap shots are cheap. At least they had the balls to cover the Scientology debacle. Want to show them up? Stop the mudslinging and actually do an unbiased take on what both sides are saying.

  • http://thetathx1138.livejournal.com Dan

    Courage doesn’t compensate for stupidity: they got the story wrong, TWICE, and did so in an inexcusable manner. The NOW was a bad paper, period; badly edited, badly written, badly laid out, and based on a bad idea (notice that most of its content was provided not by staff but by BLOGGERS? I HAVE A BLOG and I think that’s a bad idea!). Good riddance.

  • http://taurelilomea.com John Burkhart

    First, the little fronts begin to collapse. Then, the smaller orgs.
    Then, large front groups like CCHR and the big, regional orgs.
    I eagerly await the day when Anonymous must travel to Flag, Gold, or the Freewinds to protest.

  • http://enturbulation.org Dave

    Obviously, it’s not hitting someone when he is down when that someone is lying his way out the door. Those lies were over the top, and appear to be intended to pad a specific persons resume.

    There must be some CoS worshipers who are upset over this. “Journalism” should be about truth, not Scientology, which is lies. That’s why this paper failed.

  • Paul Riddick

    They made outlandish claims with no basis in reality, yet is good for them to believe and make others think is truth? They must have been running their business on Lafayette Hubbard’s (Scientology) ‘business’ principles.

  • http://truthtopplestyranny.blogspot.com Bob

    Don’t leave me BostonNow! I loved you, I still love you!

    You never want to ever speak to me again? Why?

    What do you mean you have to “disconnect”?

    Oh, its Scientology policy is it? I see, you have no choice but to abandon your loved ones for a cult.

    I’m sorry I made you downstat.

  • http://www.xenu.net Anonymous

    There is soooo much more to Scientology than this wacky celebrity and e-meters, Hey here’s an idea, why don’t you cover the real reason Anonymous is protesting? Like the human rights abuses, protection of rapists and child molestors, the secret IRS tax agreement that gives them special exemptions no other religions get, the stalking and murder of critics, the hundreds of front groups, the medical malpractice, the real story behind the founder/scam artist L Ron Hubbard, the dissconnection policy, cure or kill policy toward gays, the brainwashing, the whole XENU story which is really what they sell you after you reach the high levels, the biggest infiltration of US government offices in history, the illegal weapons caches, the slave labor camps on US soil, the blackmail and purchasing of authorities and judges, the abuse of staff, the suppression of free speech, and the hundreds of dead scientologists intentionally driven to suicide? Why don’t you tell us more about this? Why not cover the biggest scam in world history? Why not cover the first ever global pickets organized without any leaders by citizens of the internets? How about the fact there have been 3 major worldwide protests since feb 10th with over 10,000 participants in every major city and many small ones too?

  • Anonymous Too

    What Anonymous ^^^ said. There’s a lot more to this story than Scientology’s pathetic self-aggrandizement. The CoS management has perpetrated criminal acts, harassment, fraud, slavery, kidnapping, murder, practicing medicine without a license, perjury, suborning of perjury, terrorism, filing false reports, malicious/baseless litigation, child abuse, obstruction of justice, harboring fugitives… the list goes on and on and on.

    The CoS organization runs counter to the interests of every sector of society, willing to break any law to further its own interests.


  • JOe Q Public

    Yeah Boston Magazine….way to kick someone when they are down…real tough guys!

  • Whit

    Gimme a break with the sympathy for Boston Now. They deserve no less than Keohane gives. A pathetic excuse for a “newspaper” if there ever was one. I was thrilled to hear that they won’t be trashing up the streets with their rag one day more–and then when I got to my T station this morning–no pushy fucker trying to thrust a piece of shit paper in my hands! Who loses in this proposition exactly?

  • Idiot wind

    I’m sorry, but didn’t Keohane once work for the Dig, a pathetic excuse for an alt-weekly that continues to trash up the streets with its weekly rag? And if you’re going to trash BostonNOW for misspelling words like Israel and greenest (that one was on the cover), why are you suddenly placing such stringent journalistic standards on Nero’s fiddling? In fairness, Russell was probably interrupted several times by the appraisers in his office bumping him with measuring tape.

    As for that last CYA graf, let’s see how Keohane handles getting laid off or forced into a buyout package.

  • Delivery Gal

    As much as people will or will not miss the paper, the most important thing is the huge group of people who lost their jobs. I didn’t work for the paper itself, but I did work for the distribution company that was responsible for getting those papers to whoever wanted them every day. I worked Sunday night (4/13), and on Monday afternoon, I got a phone call telling me that I’m no longer employed. No warning, no severance, and not even a full week’s pay for my last paycheck.
    I could care less if people liked or didn’t like the paper, but seriously… When people can just have their jobs yanked out from under them without any warning at all, I think we should be worrying about other things than whether or not they had typos or screwed up a story or two.

    Good luck to all who lost their livelihood in this ridiculous situation.