Monday, January 17, 2011

"Advertising Could Pay for a Mission to Mars, Scientist Says"

Hey, why not? It pays for everything else.
Welcome to the manned mission to Mars -- brought to you with limited interruptions by Bud Light.

It's not so crazy, actually: One of the biggest obstacle to a potential space mission is finding the almost $150 billion dollars needed to develop the program. And tagging a future spaceship with the word “Drinkability” may seem ridiculous, but it's exactly what Rhawn Joseph has proposed in the latest issue of the Journal of Cosmology.

“With clever marketing and advertising and the subsequent increase in public interest, between $30 billion to $90 billion can be raised through corporate sponsorships, and an additional $1 billion a year through individual sponsorships,” wrote Joseph, a scientist with the Brain Research Laboratory in California.

Just as Tang became associated in the public's eye with space travel in the 70s and 80s, Joseph suggests selling the naming rights to Mars landing craft, the Mars Colony, the spaceship itself and more. Television broadcasting rights alone would bring in $30 billion, and that doesn't include the sale of real estate and mineral rights on Mars.
I see no problem with it. Sponsors pay for expeditions on Earth all the time. Why couldn't they do the same for space ventures? Such trips would be more expensive and dangerous than a simple jaunt down the Amazon River, but wouldn't the extra danger make it all the more exciting for a potential audience? Therefore, more attractive to potential sponsors?

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