Cornell Media Relations shows how NOT to do media relations
WHY? WHY? WHY?
The Cornell Daily Sun student newspaper ran an excellent article showing that over 96% of Cornell faculty political donations went to Democrats. It was simple, ahem, math.
Yours truly was quoted extensively, as we reported with mathematical precision, 97% of faculty donations at Cornell Univ. to Democrats:
Prof. William Jacobson, law, one of the 15 Republican donors, said that he found the statistics “completely predictable.”
I had heard that Jesse Watters from The O’Reilly Factor was on campus, but for some reason he didn’t contact me. I need better PR people. In fact, I need any PR people.
Watters frequently visits college campuses for his Watters’ World segments, asking seemingly simple questions to frequently bewildered students. It’s always in good fun, never mean-spirited.
And that’s exactly what he did at Cornell with students on campus. So far, so good.
And then Cornell Media Relations stepped in and shut him down. For no obvious reason. And thereby created THE STORY that Watters’ World was shut down.
What explains this overreaction?
I suspect it was the Project Veritas video in which a Cornell assistant dean of students appeared to indicate a willingness to have ISIS train on campus. (As I made clear in my post about it, I don’t think the assistant dean understood the questions.) That created a firestorm of controversy to which university communications was very sensitive.
But for Jesse Watters, these campus visits are out in the open and all in good fun. Cornell Media Relations should have left well enough alone. After all, it’s Watters, and everywhere is his world.
Had Cornell just left it alone, the story would have been no big deal.
Cornell now will experience the Streisand Effect.DONATE
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