Wednesday, September 24, 2008

New England Blade's sinking ship?

Boston's GLBT media scene is buzzing over rumors surrounding alleged fiscal problems at HX Media's revamped IN Newsweekly--now called the New England Blade.

According to a Loaded Gun tipster:

* New England Blade was served an eviction notice from their landlord at 450 Harrison Avenue in the South End.

* The staff has been asked to wait before they cash their paychecks.

* They were told that HX Media in NYC is trying to line up some angel investors to put money into the company.

* Payments to the distributor are rumored to be two months behind which could impede the delivery of tomorrow's paper.

* HX Media honcho Matthew Bank allegedly flew in from NYC to quell the staff's growing discontent.

The latest barrage of insider gossip punctuates an already scandalous year for the New England Blade.

Back in January ‘08, four longtime contributors to IN Newsweekly, including former editor Fred Kuhr, have either formally resigned or stopped contributing to the newspaper after the new publisher repeatedly failed to pay them in a timely manner and ignored concerns over its revamped editorial direction.

Bank fired the paper’s then associate publisher, Bill Berggren, in early 2008. In Feb. 2008, Bank had a judge issue an injunction against Berggren, publisher of the now-defunct N'Touch New England, after allegedly soliciting ads for the publication while still working at the New England Blade, then called IN Newsweekly.

Berggren is now selling ads for competitor Bay Windows.

In June '08, New England Blade got the royal smackdown by gay pub competitor Bay Windows for using the word "official" in their annual gay pride guide.

Click here for the backstory.

UPDATE: James Patterson, the publisher at the New England Blade, tells Bay Windows' Ethan Jacobs that the pub is not being evicted ... their lease is merely up and they're in the process of renegotiating.

The publisher declined to comment on the claim that staffers were asked to wait to cash their paychecks, however, he did say the paper has acquired new investors.

Patterson's spin blames Wall Street for the delay in payments to the distributor. And, contrary to my insider source, the paper will hit stands tomorrow.

Click here for Ethan Jacobs' report.


Anonymous said...

Yeh, wow, what a shock. Have you seen this rag lately? It is unreadable. It is a bunch of recycled stories from their DC and NY papers. Plus what happened to the nightlife section?! I miss InNews.

Anonymous said...

Dear anonymous:

Divine Providence offers an excellent counterpoint to the Blade. It's more Providence, but that's where the nightlife is these days, I love Princess Pearl's column!

Anonymous said...

The New England Blade, which normally comes out on Thursday mornings, is still not anywhere to be found at any of their usual distribution locations in Boston, Provincetown or Providence (as of Friday, 3:30 p.m.)

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