BOSTON (CBS) – Sunday marks one year since the Boston Globe published a memorable piece of “fake news.”
On April 9, 2016, the Boston Globe posted a controversial mock front page that imagined what the world would look like under President Donald Trump, who was only a Republican presidential candidate at the time.
When Trump got wind of the publication, he quipped at a campaign event “How about that stupid Boston Globe?”
April 9, 2016: Boston Globe Prints Fake Front Page Satirizing Donald Trump
The newspaper was dated in the future, and this Sunday is the date that was featured atop the mock page.
At the time, editorial director Kathleen Kingsbury explained the decision to post headlines such as “Deportations to begin,” “New libel law targets ‘absolute scum’ in press,” and “US soldiers refuse orders to kill ISIS families.”
“We want the Republican party to figure out how to bring honor back to politics in America,” Kingsbury said at the time of publication.
This week, WBZ-TV political analyst Jon Keller talked to WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Carl Stevens about the splash the mock edition made.
“Looking back on it, it was a good move by the Globe. Newspapers that are struggling to survive need to generate buzz and excitement,” Keller said.
Though the Trump section was intended to be an editorial insert in the day’s Boston Globe, delivery people were reportedly confused and in many cases wrapped it around the actual news of the day. As a result, the mock section ended up at readers’ homes appearing to be the day’s legitimate front page.
Dan Kennedy, an associate professor of journalism at Northeastern University and panelist on WGBH’s Beat the Press, reflected on the Globe’s satirized Trump coverage.
“It’s interesting because later in the year the Globe did another big opinion splash that got a lot of public play on gun violence, and I think they learned from this experience,” Kennedy told Keller in a recent interview. “It was much clearer that they were making an editorial statement and I think that was more successful than (the Trump page), although I certainly think they succeeded on certain levels. Looking back on it today, it looks pretty prescient in a lot of ways.”
One item on the mock front page ended up close to an exact prediction. The page included a photograph of Chinese President Xi Jinping and his wife waving to the camera.
Just this week, Jinping and his wife were at the Mar-a-Lago resort for a meeting with President Trump.
Keller said that the Boston Globe edition from one year ago was memorable, and added that Trump’s presidency may be just what the newspaper industry needs.
“For all of the harsh words directed toward the press by this administration by President Turmp, it’s early yet but he may turn out to be the best thing to happen to newspapers like the Boston Globe,” Keller added.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Carl Stevens reports