Is the commercialization of museums the “new normal”?
Nonprofit status subsidizes museums through the public tax code. The status was invented more than a century ago to foster diversity of independent thought, free from the narrow economic demands of business or the ideological commands of government. Today, that independence is being corrupted as the wall separating art museums from business activities is crumbling.
Although this article (link) is looking at art museums, the main take-away for me was that blatant and unethical commercialization can wreck immeasurable damage to museums’ credibility in the long run. If people have lose faith in museums (art museums specifically or all museums), it will be a long, hard slog to earn back their trust.