That didn't last long: Globe CEO quits, effective right this second; Henrys to roll up their sleeves more

Joel Abrams reports that Doug Franklin quit as head of the Globe today after just six months in the job. No specifics, but "differences" over strategy cited. Dan Kennedy posts Franklin's memo to Globe staff. And he posts John Henry's memo about how he and wife Linda will be assuming a more active role in running the Globe.

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Didn't Accept Pollack Family Payment

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For the latest "Stephanie Pollack Has Evolved" B.S. Boston has a big problem on its hands. A 5-year old child runs our transportation system

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Re: Fish is up & running to his keyboard...

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Thanks for the laugh Dave! Indeed, O-FISH-L will take the bait on any Globe demise story. It's sad because I have many friends who were drivers, mailers, pressmen on Morrissey Boulevard, now long gone. In the old days the dark green Globe truck would pull up to the police cruiser at 4 am and give a bunch of papers for the station or barracks. Now there are very few Globe trucks left. Keep blaming the internet and not their far-left politics. After all, Trump only got 1,083,069 votes in MA. Write them off.

I only repeat my customer service experience while canceling the Globe because of the hypocrisy of calling a Dorchester number and reaching Manila, Philippines. After the 2016 fake Trump front page, the lovely woman in Manila told me that the reason for an hour-long hold was because "many, many" had canceled that day. Layoffs soon followed. Not one member of the Boston media has followed up about the impact of the fake front page but the turmoil at the Globe seems to continue.

As a canceled subscriber, I can only see the Globe's home page, nothing further. It was interesting on Sunday to see only one negative Trump story rather than the usual ten. Some "columnist" named Cohen, obsessed with Trump and for far too long given great exposure, seems to have been taken off page 1. Meanwhile Kevin Cullen was seen on Boston TV trying to duck out of the picture, interviewing an illegal alien hispanic who had finally been brought to justice. The sob story column followed. This only weeks after the unlicensed Irish "electrician" here illegally for two decades and wanted on an arrest warrant, was deported with great sympathy from the Globe.

If Henry and his child-bride have any fiduciary responsibility to the Globe, its employees and readers, they will continue changing staff and hire people able to play the news down the middle. That would be a breath of fresh-air after such a long decline. Perhaps Henry's other great investment, Pablo Sandoval can pick up a few subscriptions.

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Globe to become "a weekly

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Globe to become "a weekly WGBH publication" staffed by has beens subsidized by taxpayers and corporate write-offs in 3....2....

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Oh good!

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I'm sure Linda will right the ship. That's what years worth of business experience gets you!

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Fallout?

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From those three meddling kids?

But seriously, I can't tell whether the Globe is on a good path or an evil one.

If only they'd fire Shirley Leung, for oblivious corporate shilling, with a terse memo that doesn't even wish her well in her future pursuits, I could put my money on it being a good path.

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O (no) Henry

John Henry being more active. Big sigh.

This clown buys into the myth that the sole goal of a a company is to maximize profit. To this end, he produced the most expensive MLB tickets and on the newspaper side drove decades-long subscribers like me away with no staff, fluff reporting, strangling use of paywall, and way overpriced paper and electronic offerings.

So now, the ex-paper will suffer under his vision and implementation directly. It is to laugh. He is as the cliché goes off base.

He has no idea how to operate media.

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please

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If Henry was truly concerned only with profits, he would never have gotten into the newspaper business. The Globe was in a tailspin before he bought it, and it has continued.

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I thought any viability,

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I thought any viability, operating profit, or residual value of the Globe business entity was just a bonus to Henry.

Isn't the real estate worth more than what he paid for the paper?

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Amusing

...but illogical.

He already had his fortune. He took on the Sox and Globe apparently more as vanity projects than empire building. He treats both the same and they suffer from decisions that drive up prices and in the case of the Globe, lessen the product.His directions only operate in the simple-minded supply-and-demand fantasy.I am not at all surprised that multiple head execs disagree with his vision.

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Huh?

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You contradict yourself. Did he buy these companies to maximize profits, or as vanity projects?

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Double huh?

Those are not contradictory. He operates stomping his boots — that profit-is-the-goal. Yet, he has his bags o' money, so he can play with the Sox and Globe without those being his big incomes. He wants to have brought a WS prize to Boston (did that), but he doesn't seem at all inclined to make the Globe so valuable that he can sell it for billions of profits. That's more evidence of the vanity nature of it all.

No contradiction, just a rich guy playing the game as he knows it. The unfortunate aspects include those absurd Sox tix and the vastly lower quality Globe. His pretense that he can use his heavy footed style and make the Globe "great again" doesn't hold.

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Where to begin?

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Let's start with the newspaper side. He inherited a newspaper hemorrhaging money because of the internet. The staff was shrinking for years before the purchase because of loss of revenue. Your griping about the paywall? No, you're griping about having to pay the salaries of the people whose stories you want to read. Sorry people, but newspapers are not run on rainbows and good feelings. The staff has to pay rent and read, so accept the paywall.

But let's look at John Henry's other local interest. You know, the base ball club whose ticket prices were amongst the highest back in the 1990s when the nonprofit Yawkey Trust ran it. Do you know why first the Yawkey Trust then the Fenway Sports Group charged the highest (on average) for tickets. Because they could. If they didn't, the tickets would all be bought by resellers who would make a killing in the secondary market. Sure, when they bought the team, FSG could have decided to set ticket prices on the levels that the Montreal Expos set their prices, then we could watch all the good players leave because there would be no money to pay them. That's the free market, my friend.

Do I like the direction the Globe has gone? As a print subscriber, I do feel unloved, but I know that Boston is doing better than other cities. Do I like the business plans of FSG? As a Liverpool fan, I think they could do better.

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Pay wall

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What major newspapers don't use pay walls these days? The NYT, WSJ, LA Times, Washington Post all do. Hell, even the Patriot Ledger does.

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UHub covers more local & hard

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UHub covers more local & hard news than the Globe, more accurately than the Globe, less frequently biased than the Globe, and faster than the Globe, FOR FREE.

So why would anyone pay for the Globe?

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Not so fast

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Nothing against our gracious host, but if you think City Hall licensing hearings and the odd community meeting in the greater Roslindale area is the sum of news in the city, I've got a bridge to sell you.

Don't get me wrong. This is an invaluable resource, but there is one reporter who links to a lot of other sources running this site.

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Correct

We all love Adam, but Universal Hub is a terrific supplement to local news, not a substitute.

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Each has its strengths

UHub covers more local & hard news than the Globe

Yes, Adam covers a lot that the Globe doesn't, and vice versa. I'd call that a good thing, they complement each other.

The Boston Globe is a lot more than the "Boston" Globe and licensing hearings, etc. would be wasted space for 95+% of their readers.

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The purchase of the Globe by

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The purchase of the Globe by Henry and his wife, scion of a real-estate developer, was always a real-estate deal. He bought the Globe for $70M, assuming a large pension debt. He's shipped off the Worcester T&G for $17M and nearly sold the Morrissey HQ land for $80M. Once he sells the Morrissey land, he's free to either sell off the Globe for barely anything or to close the Globe and write off the losses. This was never about newspapers; that was simply a minor experiment for him to tinker with. It's too bad. If he had tried the Bezos approach, the Globe could actually be thriving like the WashPo.

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What are the chances Henry

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What are the chances Henry may close the Globe and write off the losses? The CEO leaving only after a few months on the job looks like a warning sign. And both reportedly disagreeing on "how to strategically achieve (the company's) financial sustainability" tells me there is serious money trouble. Would we all be surprised if the Globe is gone two years from now?

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Conversely

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Perhaps the CEO is resigning as a way of taking responsibility of the horrible way the closure of the Dorchester plant went. Alienating the print subscribers by abruptly shifting production to Taunton was a horrible decision. Heads should roll, and perhaps this is the head to roll.

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At the end of the day

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Who is ultimately responsible?

Was Claude Julian responsible for the Bruins stinking this year? Same thing. There is only one person that can go.

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Responsible...

... or designated to take the fall?

Henry himself is, of course, ultimately responsible (and probably very much actually responsible). But he is hardly likely to fire himself.

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I am betting among the

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I am betting among the disagreements between Franklin (the CEO) and Henry was print distribution... Franklin strongly recommended to discontinue print and switch to digital-only publication to save costs (and the Globe's existence), as he is now seeing that print distribution is becoming economically unfeasible for the Globe. Henry didn't want to hear it. Franklin likely concluded the Globe as a sinking ship and decided to quit. Good luck to Henry at this point in finding any publishing executive who would work with him.

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The Globe does good

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The Globe does good investigative journalism. See the recent Manchester VA story or the taxi medallions. Perhaps Bezos will buy them.

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