Explore Minnesota Takes Detour Through Pittsburgh PA

The latest Minnesota Twitter hubub is about the website Explore Minnesota which allegedly has chosen a webfirm from Pittsburgh.

TaulPaul has been tweeting and retweeting.

RT @agencybablyon To @johnfedman & @exploreminn. Did you Explore Minnesota web talent in your agency search? Why Pittsburgh PA?

From the Explore Minnesota website,

Nobody knows more about where to go and what to do in Minnesota than those who have experienced it. Who better to tell you where the best biking trails are, the most picturesque camping spot, and the coolest places to build memories with your kids.
New lists are added all the time.

*Update*

More information adding to the complaint’s relevance.

The Minnesota Department of Finance has authorized the release of an additional $1 million from the state’s general fund to Explore Minnesota Tourism’s FY 2007 budget….
The work of Explore Minnesota Tourism is key to the state’s economy. Explore Minnesota Tourism promotes travel throughout Minnesota, helping to bring almost 29 million visitors and more than $10 billion to the state annually. Tourism is one of the largest industries in the state, supporting 235,000 jobs.

An investment of $1 in state tourism marketing has been shown to produce $4.60 in new state and local taxes, $20.40 in wages and $53 in gross sales. Currently, tourism produces more than $1 billion annually in state and local taxes.”

 
Also, in a 2009 funding meeting they talk about gaining more money from our Lottery and/or taxes and one of the reasons is to “Overhaul website content”.

It makes me wonder.

Does an organization about Minnesota that uses our tax money and the promise of creating more jobs in Minnesota as one of it’s main talking points have an obligation to try and hire from within the state?

What do you think?

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9 Comments so far

  1. Aaron (s4xton) on June 24th, 2009 @ 1:26 pm

    I don’t think we can call this the "latest Minnesota Twitter hubub" when 15 people in the same circle of friends are just retweeting the same thing amongst each other — especially when the people complaining are competitors to the winning firm.


  2. David (jacc) on June 24th, 2009 @ 1:34 pm

    @aaron – Despite your worst efforts, you don’t decide the Internet.


  3. fkajames on June 24th, 2009 @ 10:12 pm

    This qualifies as the stupidest "complaint" I’ve heard in calendar June, 2009. Someone is pissed because the internet did one of the things it was supposed to do — eliminate geographic barriers to commerce? The idiocy is almost breathtaking. How many times did these geniuses fail Econ 101?


  4. David (jacc) on June 24th, 2009 @ 10:56 pm

    @James – "This qualifies as the stupidest "complaint" I’ve heard in calendar June, 2009"

    You must not get out much.

    "Someone is pissed because the internet did one of the things it was supposed to do — eliminate geographic barriers to commerce The idiocy is almost breathtaking. How many times did these geniuses fail Econ 101?"

    Not sure, perhaps more advanced Econ classes cover outsourcing and sending state gov’t subsidized money beyond the state tax base when that very tax base has highly qualified professionals that could do the same work or better.

    There’s certainly a debate.

    Especially when they are talking about using Lottery money which, if I remember correctly, is supposed to be used for the environment.


  5. tipper on June 25th, 2009 @ 9:38 am

    I think it sure would be nice if they practiced what they preached.


  6. jimf on June 25th, 2009 @ 10:15 am

    They only have an obligation if Minnesota companies pledge not to bid on any taxpayer supported projects in other states. What’s fair is fair.


  7. pro777 on June 25th, 2009 @ 3:50 pm

    I’m not irritated that this contract went out of state; that happens to the best of them. The RFP was clearly available for the local web community.

    I am irritated that the Tourism Board picked a company which would make a site that is actually inaccessible. Flash, bad urls, invalid HTML all spell accessibility issues and the fact that the web design is dated and stale isn’t going to win Minnesota any fans.


  8. David (jacc) on June 25th, 2009 @ 10:26 pm

    To be fair to Explore Minnesota, I’m sure it’s a tiny fraction of a large budget.

    They do a lot of good for the state, but I hope they also listen to some constructive arguements for improvement; regardless of hubub.


  9. kevinfromminneapolis on June 29th, 2009 @ 6:43 pm

    I agree with Aaron.



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