My local classical station is about to launch its semi-annual fund raiser. For the past few days, announcers have been telling me that the official start of the campaign is March 28.But the truth is the radio station campaigns all year long.
I understand radio stations need public support, and it’s reasonable to ask the listeners for it. However, since last fall’s fund raiser, announcers have reminded me on a daily basis that the station is always looking for donations and telling me three or four ways that I can send my money in. So telling me now that the real fund raiser is six days away is somewhat disconcerting. When do I get a break and just enjoy the wonderful classical music without an accompanying plea for money?
I guess the difference between the ongoing fund raising and the Spring Fund Raiser is that I get to listen to classical music more than I listen to people talk. During the official campaign the emphasis is on talk as the announcers mention various appreciation gifts one can receive at a particular donation level and identify by name those who have already given.
This year, the station has announced that its goal for the Big Event is $32, 381. It seems modest by most standards, but what attracted my attention is that Teddy Weithers, marketing director and musical host, has informed us that there will be no regular programming until that goal is reached.
This feels like ransom rather than fundraising to me.