Experts: Sponsors Did Right Thing in Dropping Imus
When advertisers ran from Don Imus, the die was cast: MSNBC and CBS pulled the plug on his show.
But the question remains: did the sponsors show leadership in making their decisions to cancel ad spots -- or was it a case of cut and run?
Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, senior associate dean at the Yale School of Management, and James Post, corporate governance and ethics professor at the Boston University School of Management, told "Power Lunch" viewers that the sponsors did the right thing -- and will do it again in the future.
Post told CNBC's Sue Herera that advertisers made "tough calls that had to be made." He pointed to "the Aqua Teen Hunger Force scandal" two months ago, when the animated show's notorious ad campaign led to the Cartoon Network's then-CEO, Jim Samples, quitting. Post said such incidents have driven advertisers to fear "uncertain, unpredictable" individuals -- like Imus.
Sonnenfeld agreed that the sponsors showed "good leadership" -- but said it was "30 years, or at least 10 days too late." He said the public feels that ad spots constitute a sponsor's "endorsement" of a show -- and the Yale professor believes that advertisers will demand a bigger role in determining content in the future.