Burying the lead
That is until I read the news today, oh boy, that the Taylor family had a chance to get in on the ground floor of what today is Monster.com -- and passed up the chance.
The Globe, like every major paper, literally got fat and happy with classified advertising. The decline of that revenue source is at the root of the problem of every struggling newspaper.
But not every newspaper had the opportunity to get in on the ground floor of the phenomenon that has led them to desperation.
To their credit, the Taylors are not shy about admitting what hindsight says is one of the most bone-headed moves in Boston history.
Asked about the mid-1990s rebuff to Monster.com, Steve Taylor, who was executive vice president of the Globe during those discussions, said, "I'm sorry to tell you that's an absolutely true story."That may be the quote they stick on the Globe's tombstone.
Taylor family members in Globe management at the time recall the episode as a missed investment opportunity, something that might have given the company a financial cushion though certainly not slowed the Internet's rise or the erosion of the print classified ad base. "The Globe just didn't want to cannibalize itself," Steve Taylor said.
Ben Taylor, the last member of his family to serve as publisher of the Globe, also remembered the paper's decision to pass up an investment in Monster.com. "Getting a piece of Monster might have been a quantum leap into the digital world," he acknowledged. "But it may have been a leap we weren't prepared to take."