Guess I was wrong

April 23, 2012


Just did an interview with Chris Seto of the Guelph Mercury.

Here I am thinking this video showcasing the City – that I have enormous pride in – is a great thing.

Here I am thinking that promoting Guelph across North America is a good thing.

Here I am thinking that we have a high quality production to use in our economic development activities to attract jobs and investment to Guelph.

Here I am thinking the Discovery channel actually thought we were a great city when they came pitch us a segment on their show.

Apparently not.  Apparently because I did not mention that it cost us $25,000 on my 5 minute interview on Inside Guelph that I have misled you all.

Well let me say it before they print it.  That was not my intent. 

Our City’s intent was to take advantage of a GREAT DEAL that was pitched to us.  Can you imagine the cost of a TV ad promoting Guelph across North America?

At City Hall, we are proud of Guelph.  ARE YOU?

About Karen Farbridge

An unwavering change maker seeking a just, democratic and sustainable world.

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11 Comments on “Guess I was wrong”

  1. Thai Says:

    So Guelph paid for airtime. A paid advertisement as opposed to having been “showcased”. Yes I would say that’s misleading and quite disappointing really. People would think our city was exceptional and that’s why it was featured. But it’s only a paid advertisement?

  2. John Says:

    Very proud of Guelph…..but why are the citizens of Guelph find out things after it
    happens.I thought you ran on a platform of transparency.

  3. Dan Says:

    Karen, don’t worry about the naysayers – they’re the same people who made us spend much more on some seemingly non-existent salamanders.

  4. Laura Says:

    Very proud indeed!

  5. rmay26 Says:

    Who would be the intended audience for such a video, out of curioisity? It would be interesting to see the viewership stats by geography — my sense is that 95%+ of the views would be Guelph based.

    Would have been better to assign this project to a high school tech class or something of that nature. Nothing particularly impressive about the production quality and not sure Terry Bradshaw is worth the premium paid for his involvement.

    So, this isn’t a matter of whether or not citizens are proud of Guelph — but, in my case, I would suggest that I’d like to be prouder of the way our city hall uses taxpayer funds in the future.

  6. David Says:

    I think Chris Seto of the Mercury should have done more grueling in-depth research like reading the article in the Mercury’s sister publication the Tribune. I read about the fee in the Tribune. Is that laziness? Incompetence? Is he trying to make news? Why does Chris hate Guelph? All towns that get profiled on this program pay the fee for service, that’s reasonable. This kind of showcasing is extremely valuable and expensive. I love Guelph and am proud to live and work here. Chris should be too. The video looks great – a good bang for the buck!

  7. Mario Says:

    David hit the nail on the head, bang on!

  8. Thai Says:

    Forget the Tribune for a minute. It was the city that initially flaunted this without disclosing the fact it was a paid advertisement. Only through a 3rd party news source do we find out that that’s what it was. The initial impression given by City Hall via press releases and social media platforms was that it was a special feature. No where had it mentioned that it was only made possible by paying for it. That’s misleading, deceiving and there’s no denying it. Why should we have to “dig” for it to see it for what it is?

  9. Stan Says:

    As per the video -too good -where are we going to put all the people who will want to live here?

    Let’s have some real news coverage -investigating the complex serious challenges we face and some positive options to consider. If I want cheap pot shots I can watch Fox.

  10. Jennifer Says:

    The video is paid advertising. Guelph was approached by a salesperson, offered a product at a price, and opted in. From what I have read, this was not an offer that was unique to Guelph, and the fact that a limited number of other cities in Canada have such a video may simply mean that many municipalities turned down the offer. Whether it will pay for itself remains to be seen.

    What bothers me about the Mayor’s post and other comments that I have read is the implication that somehow, if I disagree with $25000 being spent on this video, I am not proud of Guelph. I’ve lived in Guelph for the better part of 40 years and I love this city. I disagree with Mayor Farbridge, so that makes me disloyal to Guelph? How my pride is dependent on my approval of an infomercial that Guelph bought and paid for, I don’t know.

  11. Richard Says:

    If the Tribune asked the Mayor about the fees, and Chris Seto of the Mercury did not, who’s fault is that? I go to industrial trade shows regularly, municipalities spend a lot of money promoting themselves to the world and prospective investors, it is built into their economic development plans and budgets. A municipality that doesn’t do this, is short changing it’s citizens and missing opportunities. If you don’t think advertising works, I would have to wonder where you’ve been living. If you believe a mayor makes decisions to spend money outside a budget then you haven’t been paying attention to the heavily covered budget process over the years. The mayor didn’t hide anything, Chris was sloppy in his work by not asking good questions and then found out what he had missed, perhaps from reading the Trib. I agree it is probably a bit harsh to infer he hates Guelph, but he has been around long enough to understand the budget and spending process. It looks to me that, in order to make the story more exciting, he was misleading his readers rather than the mayor misleading him. Chris, you are capable of better than this.

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