Tag Archives: Gazette blogs

Ted Bird joins Gazette as a blogger

Speaking of unemployed people in local media, Ted Bird (you know, the guy who left CHOM at the beginning of the year) is now blogging for The Gazette.

Bird wouldn’t say how much (if anything) he’s being paid for the gig, but he’s “happy with the exposure and the chance to establish myself in print.”

He’s continuing to blog on his own as well. So those who miss his opinions won’t be left wanting.

The Gazette’s new blog … about Montreal

The Gazette’s Andy Riga, apparently not content enough with his new transportation beat, has started up a new blog called Metropolitan News at communities.canada.com/montrealgazette/blogs/metropolitannews/default.aspx.

In its inaugural post, Riga promises the blog will “offer quirky looks at Montreal events, news and personalities; highlight the city’s vibrant online community, from bloggers to Twitterers to video posters; and tell you what is being said about our fair city in other parts of the blogosphere.”

I look forward to seeing what he’s got in store, and not just because I’m on his blogroll. Riga also has a Twitter account associated with this new project, which is worth a follow.

Gazette books section: bigger, less often, plus blog

As part of incremental changes to reduce the amount of newsprint it uses and otherwise cut costs, The Gazette has made its weekly tabloid Books section into a monthly one, while increasing its size to about double what it was.

For you math experts out there, doubling the size of a section but having it run only a quarter as often will result in 50% less content overall on average. (It’s actually a bit better than that, because on Saturdays when the section doesn’t appear there will be a page from it in the Saturday Extra section).

This shouldn’t come as a surprise to people who have been following the newspaper industry worldwide, as fewer and fewer papers still have such sections at all. If anything, the surprise is that the section wasn’t eliminated entirely.

The Science section, which appeared at the back of Books every week, gets cut loose from that odd-couple relationship and will rejoin the Insight section (which is now part of the A section) on Sundays.

As part of the metamorphosis, the paper gets a new online Books page, which includes a blog called Narratives, and both will get updates between appearances of the big monthly section.

I’ve never been a big book-review-section person myself, so I’m not particularly affected by this decision.

Perhaps that’s the problem.

UPDATE: Andrew Phillips has a post about this on his blog. He mentions that the local literary community was consulted and that, generally, it’s an agreeable compromise.

More traffic to Gazette blogs solves newspaper crisis

Andrew Phillips posts a graph showing that traffic to The Gazette’s blogs has more than quadrupled over the past year. I’ll go ahead and assume it’s because I keep linking to them.

Stephanie Myles’s frequently updated Open Court tennis blog is by far the most popular in terms of page views. It’s also by far the most updated (about as much as all the other ones combined).

UPDATE (Aug. 7): Andrew also points out a huge increase in traffic to the Habs Inside/Out blog, which is getting regular updates on the Mats Sundin situation from resident funnyman Mike Boone.

Gazette starting Olympics page, photographer blog

As editor-in-chief Andrew Phillips explains in a blog post, The Gazette is jumping on the bandwagon and has launched an Olympics website to cover the Beijing Games that start next week, at www.canada.com/montrealgazette/news/sports/beijing2008/index.html. Most of the web content is provided by Canwest, which has a similar page (as does the Ottawa Citizen, Vancouver Sun, etc.)

Other media outlets have already launched Olympics pages, which I have almost universally panned. That said, it’s clear the news media is making a much bigger effort toward these games in terms of online coverage. (It remains to be seen which of these websites will have better live coverage of the Games.)

As part of local coverage of the Games (and to justify the oodles of money spent sending him there), The Gazette is also starting a blog for photographer John Mahoney, who will accompany reporter Dave Stubbs to Beijing (Stubbs already has a blog up with funny little stories leading up to the Games). Mahoney has a first post relating Beijing to his first Olympics in Lake Placid in 1980.

The paper, of course, will also have special coverage. Mahoney has photo profiles of different athletes each day starting Saturday, there will be a special Olympics preview section on Wednesday, and each day of the Games will have special Olympics sections with pages of coverage (some of which will be edited by yours truly).

YASTGBs: JFL, film festivals

Two more blogs from the Gazette were launched today with premiere posts:

Just for Laughs Festival is the cleverly-named blog covering … wait for it … the Just for Laughs Festival, which runs July 10-20.

The CinĂ© Files similarly follows all those film festivals that happen here during the summer. Fantasia, FFM, FNC, Joe’s Super Awesome Film Fest, etc.

They’re both self-explanatory, no?

Gazette restarts Grand Prix blog

The Gazette’s Dave Stubbs and Randy Phillips have dusted off the Canadian Grand Prix blog and are posting to it again.

The Grand Prix, which brings in a gazillion tourist dollars from really rich people with excessively-bimboed girlfriends and features way-too-expensive cars, is next weekend (June 6-8).

The blog is part of a larger Grand Prix website, which also includes multimedia and stories from the paper and its special Grand Prix section, which will be running all week starting Monday.

New Gazette blog goes personal

Though it officially launches on Monday, The Gazette’s latest blog went live today (and this morning’s paper includes a small pointer to it). It’s called Patent Pending, and it’s the blog of a veteran Gazette copy editor who is undergoing the transition from male to female.

It varies from other Gazette blogs because it’s personal. Very personal. In fact, you can’t get much more personal than this.

The editor is Jillian (formerly Bill) Page, whose service at the paper is measured in decades more than years, and whose long-time coworkers were shocked to say the least when they got an email one day explaining that Bill was now Jill.

Coming out in this way is a challenge in itself. It’s still a bit awkward for me to override my habits in the use of personal pronouns, and I’m one of the youngest ones there. You can imagine how difficult it is in an environment where the average age is about 174.

As the inaugural post explains, expect the blog to vary between seriously discussing the social, political and health aspects of such a transition and humorously discussing some of the unexpected quirks that sitcom-like awkward situations that arise when you try to get everyone to switch from “he” to “she.”

YAGB: Environment, culture

My evil misunderstood overlords at The Gazette have launched two new blogs this week, bringing its total to 1,425:

Stage and Page, which I have to admit is a kind of catchy title, is the blog of new “culture critic” Pat Donnelly. Formerly the books columnist, she’s taken over Matt Radz’s theatre beat as well, bringing herself to a level of cultural aptitude that simply puts the rest of us to shame.

Green Life, by reporters Monique Beaudin and Michelle Lalonde, is the environment blog, which was launched last Tuesday as part of the whole Earth Day thing. It’s part of a larger “website” devoted to environment issues. There will also be a weekly column on the environment on Mondays (including a big splash in today’s Arts & Life section on reducing your carbon footprint in 12 easy steps). The column will alternate between the two as they teach us new and disgusting ways to make us greener.

(UPDATE – April 30):

Showbiz Chez Nous, by Brendan Kelly, follows the same subject matter as his weekly column: TV and movies in Quebec.

Gazette cycling blog

The Gazette launches a new blog today (with a mention on A1 and article/picture on D1) called On Two Wheels, which deals with cycling. The blogger is classical music freelancer, copy editor and all-around great person Kate Molleson, who when not asking me to cover her shifts on weekends can be seen biking around the city in all sorts of are-you-insane weather.

Her first post includes a mission statement.

Gazette editor-in-chief starting blog

Andrew Phillips, The Gazette’s editor-in-chief, is kicking the tires on a new blog in which he’ll discuss the behind-the-scenes inner workings of the newspaper and cry over wax poetically about the current status of the newspaper industry. Look for real posts at Ask the Editor starting soon.

What would you like to hear from the editor-in-chief of a major metropolitan daily newspaper?

Herbie is never happy


Fresh off his successful campaign to have Montreal Alouettes head coach Jim Popp removed, The Gazette’s Herb Zurkowsky is breaking the news of his replacement, a guy named Marc Trestman, and in the same breath suggesting the new guy is as incompetent (if not moreso) as the old guy. Could another campaign be forming?

Zurkowsky is starting to live up to his mean-looking mugshot.

UPDATE (Dec. 18): The Alouettes confirm the news, and Zurkowsky adds a pessimistic post about how bad a choice it was.