What was once a flood of money is now a trickle. The Broadcasting Board of Governors earlier this year paid Washington Software of Maryland a paltry $1,440 for an SMS gateway, which allows a computer to send or receive text messages.
Just three years ago, the BBG awarded Washington Software $2,385,079 in a single year to carry out such services as:
- Designing and operating a Short Message Service, or SMS, social network
- Sending text messages to Cuba via SMS
- Coming up with ways to prevent the Cuban government from jamming its electronic messages
- Programming computers
- Sending email blasts
The BBG, now called the Agency for Global Media, oversees the Office of Cuba Broadcasting. The agency paid Washington Software a total of $8,237,288 from 2011 to 2018.
The contractor designed Piramideo, a social network made for mobile phone users in Cuba. You can read more about Piramideo and Washington Software here.
By the way, the headline – no soup for you – is a reference to a line from the so-called “Soup Nazi” in the 116th episode of Seinfeld. The Soup Nazi is an overly sensitive restaurant owner who refuses to serve customers for the smallest of slights, such as complaining they didn’t get bread with their order of soup.
I have no reason to believe that Washington Software stepped out of line. My guess is that the contractor is getting fewer contracts because the Agency for Global Media is putting more resources into satellite TV than SMS.
See background on Washington Software.