Economics and the mid-life crisis have much in common: Both dwell on foregone opportunities

C'est la vie; c'est la guerre; c'est la pomme de terre . . . . . . . . . . . . . email: jpalmer at uwo dot ca

. . . . . . . . . . .Richard Posner should be awarded the next Nobel Prize in Economics . . . . . . . . . . . .

Saturday, December 18, 2004

"The Public Schools Tried to Pimp My Kids..."

That National Enquirer-esque headline, gleefully lifted out of context, is in a message Craig Newmark sent me. He was writing about my suggestion that our university seek sponsorship links for its websites, especially with and Chapters/Indigo, to raise funds. Here is the full quote:

Your idea that schools should be Amazon affiliates is even more appropriate for K-12. The public schools tried to pimp my kids into selling hideously overpriced gift wrap and chocolates. Affiliation with Amazon--and a few other high quality retailers--would make so much more sense. But I'd say it's no better than even money that U.S. public schools will do this in the next ten years. (Will private schools be smarter? Theory says they should...)
[quoted with permission]

When I suggested that we start putting click-throughs for Amazon and Chapters on websites here at UWO, they demurred, lamenting "the unfortunate trend of commercialization within the university."

Well, I am not going to fight this, but I embrace the trend of commercialization within the university; I do not see it as unfortunate at all! Furthermore, this approach will surely leave us less-well-funded than other places who are more innovative in their pursuit of funding. Oh well....sigh....

Many public schools (in our area, anyway) have had deals with Coca-Cola or Pepsi-Cola; maybe affiliation links on web pages aren't so far away. One difference, though, is that Coke and Pepsi work hard to sell their deals; with web-page affiliations, the schools would have to do the work.
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