By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

McNamara departs

I’m playing catch-up — if you’re looking for any intelligent comment from me, it will have to wait. But I can’t let the day end without noting that Boston Globe columnist Eileen McNamara is taking the buyout and leaving the paper.

McNamara, who won the 1997 Pulitzer Prize for commentary, brings an unusually keen social conscience to her post, and her voice will be deeply missed. She was also a fine news reporter for many years prior to being named a columnist.

And here is Globe editor Marty Baron’s memo on his accepting buyout applications from 24 staff members.

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  1. Anonymous

    Must feel really good to be one of those people who signed up for the buyout and then were told “no thanks.” What a moral booster!

  2. Anonymous

    McNamara’s departure is a serious loss for the incredibly shrinking Globe.–raj

  3. Anonymous

    I’m interested in finding out what Dan’s NU students think of their prospects: all going into nontraditional new media for careers?

  4. Anonymous

    Moral booster indeed. It’s always the ones that can easily get jobs with the competition who take these buyout offers. For “essential” employees to have their requests “rejected” shows that a large part of those just below top management are ready to bail, and that the Globe top management are stupid enough not to know this.

  5. Anonymous

    Anonymous 8:54Yes, though at this point it can hardly be called non-tradiional. I think youung people today, by in large, no where they get there news, and no where the jobs will lie. But the new technology could make it a better time to go into journalism, I would think. That Dead trees are no longer the only, or even major means to distribute the news doesn’t seem all that important. Kuttner had a great piece on this in the CJR this month.

  6. Anonymous

    I think Dan touched on this a while ago, but it’s interesting to see how our public radio stations are expanding while our papers wither on the corporate vine.I wonder how many former print people are sending resume’s to NPR? And I also wonder if NPR will compete directly with the dailies as they both establish ‘online audiences’ for audio and video?

  7. Anonymous

    Anyone think Boston is better off without Big Mac wagging her finger at us twice a week?

  8. Brian

    The news that McNamara was leaving made my day. I find her to be a smug and angry human being. If a conservative columnist wrote with the same kind of vitriol, he or she would have been run out of town years ago.

  9. Anonymous

    Really, Brian? How do you explain Howie Carr’s presence in the city, then?

  10. man who's an IBOC fan

    Dan, this might be a little too techno-weenie for MedNat, but the FCC voted today to “formalize” IBOC – the digital radio solution for AM & FM stations.This means two really big changes: first, AM stations can leave their digital signal on overnight. Until now they had to shut down at sunset or 6pm (whichever was later) because of nighttime skywave interference concerns. Skywave is why you can hear some powerful AM stations from 100’s or 1000’s of miles away. The FCC apparently decided the concerns were outweighed by the benefits of 24/7 digital radio on AM. This means an already interference-loaded nighttime AM band will get even worse; but those stations that DO run digital should (SHOULD) see substantial nighttime improvement.Second improvement is that FM multicast channels are no longer experimental, which means they aren’t restricted to non-commercial operation anymore. Look soon for HD2 channels rented out to other AM stations (especially daytimers or stations with flea-power at night) to improve the AM’s reach. Locally, I wouldn’t be surprised to see either WMKK 93.7 or WKAF 97.7 (or both) run HD2 channels simulcasting WEEI and/or WRKO to put the Sox games on an FM-quality signal. I’d also expect to see WRKO and/or WEEI to soon have digital radio installed, too.

  11. Anonymous

    Which must explain why Jeff Jacoby was run out of town years ago … oh wait.

  12. Amusedbutinformedobserver

    Conservative columnists serve up vitriol as a staple. It’s refreshing to see the right wingers as a target.

  13. Anonymous

    Eileen McNamara has a son that I assume is a few years younger than I am because I remember her writing a few columns about her son going off to college and the feelings the two felt during those days. I think I had those same conversations with my mother and felt much the same way both in being away and missing my family, but also those more ethereal questions relating to how my laundry would get done if I was the only one to do it….Those columns really hit it out of the park. McNamara’s insight as a mother was one of the major attributes to her writing….Writing that’s good enough to make one laugh out loud on the T; that good.-Mike, Wollaston

  14. man who's an npr fan

    My goodness, TWO radio items in one day! 🙂 WRNI is finally being sold, to Rhode Island Public Radio (the organization that made such a stink about the last attempt to sell WRNI). They’re also trying to buy WAKX 102.7 in southern RI.Check out the ProJo for the details (subscription req.)

  15. Anonymous

    Eileen McNamara overrated and overbearing. Her “put down” of Councilor Kelly right after he died was one of the low points of Boston journalism. Hope she learns her lesson and imparts it to the Brandeis crowd.

  16. Anonymous

    I’m also glad she’s gone. Her vitriol was ridiculous. It was pure ranting with no class. It is possible to prove your point without resorting to the media equivalence of name calling. She was nothing but a bully. The mainstream media has sunk to such lows that there is practically no integrity in journalism anymore.

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