I had thought Winnipeg School Division trustee Cathy Collins might have been joking when she told the board this week that the Toronto Globe and Mail had been given exclusive access to a warm and fuzzy event she’d just attended at Pinkham School.
Collins had been to the inner-city school to attend an announcement of a new music program by the Royal Conservatory of Music. Media magnate and Jets’ co-owner David Thomson was there.
Collins said that only the Globe and Mail was invited, and was granted an exclusive because Thomson owns the paper.
The division has confirmed Collins’ description of events.
"No media release was sent out. RCM contacted us to use a school for the photo op for the Globe. It was to be an exclusive piece," said WSD officials.
The Thomson family — as I have since read in the Globe and Mail — in fact donated $5 million nationally for the new music program for schools across the country, using Pinkham School to make the announcement... though only in the Globe and Mail.
A Royal Conservatory of Music communications officer told me today, "The Thomson family made a significant gift to The Royal Conservatory toward programming that will reach Canadians from coast to coast. As such, he felt a national platform would be best to convey the news."
Well, I feel slighted, I’ll tell you, keeping in mind that our stories go out on Canadian Press, never mind how big our local readership is — can’t imagine how miffed the CBC and CTV or Toronto Star might be feeling.
Anyone aware of any other similar one-medium-only events?