The Kings are not just big donors. They are active community members and have been very good to the university as far as endorsements, commencements, being special guests for writing classes etc go. They are friends of the university - you don't treat a friend the way the Kings were treated.
I don't even particularly care for the Kings because I get a little tired of listening to his left wing nonsense, but he still didn't deserve to be treated like that.
Also, any competent development department considers [i]all[/i] possible side effects and ways to avoid the bad effects before making a move. That obviously didn't happen here.
So any business decision needs to be run by the development office?
I have not read anywhere that the development department played any part in this decision.
[quote="Mary1"]...I don't even particularly care for the Kings because I get a little tired of listening to his left wing nonsense...[/quote]
Neither do I. Here's a few leftie morsels from his 2005 UM commencement speech.
[quote]"...look at all the sick, hungry, unhappy, uneducated people standing outside the fence America has constructed around herself, people who only want a little something for themselves and their families. For their children. Very few of them are suicide bombers. Very few of them are Mr. Bush's "enemies of freedom," whether he believes that or not. They might become enemies of freedom, but right now all they want is a little something to get by on..."
"...maybe we could make Mr. Bush let go of the weapons he loves so well..."
..."We've got a Democrat governor who's cleaner than a whistle and works like a demon all day long..."[/quote]
I think that the problem stems from the fact that WZON thought the process was still going on, when they got a call that the process was concluded and they lost the bid. The people at WZON were stunned to learn this and had assumed that they were still in the negotiation process. The opportunity to make a final offer was not available, apparently. This was a business decision and all parties are aware of that.
The University had nothing to do with the process. Howevder, that should not completely absolve them of the fallout from this.
This whole debate is missing the point.
The real question should be: Should Maine's publicly funded university be in the position of selling sports events, and media coverage of same, for big money at all?
I think it should be an institution of higher learning, period. Sports programs should be truly amateur like they were when my dad graduated in '42.
I can't understand despising people just because we disagree with their politics. Do you know how much money the Kings gave to EMMC to help fund the childrens cancer unit?
Chairman, I know King's graduation speech very well - I was among the sea of graduates that year. If it makes you feel any better, my mother booed him when he started bashing Bush - and you could hear her loud and clear.
As for the person who dislikes the fact that UMaine has a strong sports program - sports are not so anti-academics. The sports players are held to high academic standards. The sports programs also help the development office stay in touch with alumni who give to academics as well as the sports program. Whether any revenue brought in from the sports program goes towards research or teaching, I have no idea - but a nationally recognized program is a great way to cultivate all donors. I wouldn't poo-poo athletics.
[quote="Dan Billings"]So any business decision needs to be run by the development office?
I have not read anywhere that the development department played any part in this decision.[/quote]
Any business decision that could possibly impact the university's relationship with a major donor should be. They may not have been involved when all of this was first happening - but I bet you they are involved in it now - and none too happy.
[quote="Mary1"] The sports players are held to high academic standards. [/quote]
Really? What is the graduation rate of the foreigbn merceniaries brought in to play hockey?
[quote="Mary1"]Any business decision that could possibly impact the university's relationship with a major donor should be.[/quote]
That makes donations into bribes.
If people who give money get special consideration when doing business with the university, the univeristy is corrupt.
WCSH reports that Baldacci now wants to know more about the contract.
The story did not mention how much money the Kings have given Baldacci over the years.
If this was Bush, the media would be screaming about corruption and donors getting special treatment.
WVOM also has a much larger coverage area than WZON.
WVOM is for sale by Clear Channel. Maybe King will buy it.
[quote="Dan Billings"]So should the university show special consideration to a business owned by any big donor?
Is a donation really a way to help your business?[/quote]
1. yes, if by special consideration you mean a process well communicated and expectations set forth with dates certain on the bid proposal.
2. UMO a business? Please. Its a fiefdom run by academics with little or no ties to the State and perpetuated by our socialist, lefty government. The sports department is out of control and has been for years. They pretty much do whatever they want.
[size=18]UM's media rights outsourcing at issue [/size]
By Anne Ravana
Saturday, April 14, 2007 - Bangor Daily News
ORONO - Black Bear Sports Propertiesâ€™ recent decision to broadcast University of Maine sports on Clear Channel radio station WVOM has many Maine residents and UM alumni, including Gov. John Baldacci, questioning the athletic departmentâ€™s original decision to outsource its multimedia rights to a national company.
The University was correct in "outsourcing" its sports broadcasting. In fact, it is late doing what other universities have already done successfully. A university typically does not have the special skills and know-how available in the broadcast area. So it acted correctly in hiring an outside firm that knows what it is doing.
Where it fell down was in not being diplomatic enough to explain the situation to Stephen King, who just happens to be the school's most prominent and richest alumni and owns (apparently as sort of a hobby) the station that has been broadcasting UMaine games. King's station has limited coverage and provides the school with little revenue. But its owner, of course, has given UMaine millions in donations and lots more in publicity.
The Governor, a UMaine grad himself, has now inserted himself into something he should not have. Because King is a big donor to the Democratic Party as well as to UMaine, it can be argued that the Governor has more than the university in mind and is doing a bit of political grandstanding that can only complicate an unfortunate situation..