A couple of times a year I get a call, as I did last week, from a very nice student in the telemarketing office at my alma mater trying to get me to pledge to some need or another. This time, she asked me to contribute to a scholarship fund. I've been giving to another fund there for maybe 25 years in support of the department from which I earned my degrees. I told her that I still have two kids in college (not there) and that I'd like to keep giving to my department's fund but not to this scholarship fund. I must have told her that four or five times during the call, but she stuck to her script, ignoring what I was saying and kept asking me to give to the scholarship fund. Since I manage public radio and television stations that also use telemarketing for renewals, I'm thinking the whole time on this call, "What scripts might our own callers be using?" And since she didn't even ask me to renew the gift I've been loyally providing, I was left with the impression that it doesn't matter to the university any more.
There has to be a better way to develop funding than annoying our users. Doc Searls mentions public radio frequently in his writings and recently posted a thoughtful piece on an alterative. I'm not sure this is the answer, but bravo to him for suggesting it. Maybe if our listeners and viewers take things into their own hands we'll find that better way. Link: Linux Journal.
I subscribe to Doc's various feeds, but somehow missed this post, so thanks to Karen Everhart at Current for the tip. --Dennis