New uses for advertising

NASA could support space exploration by selling the broadcast rights to Martian landings.

Now that’s a good idea. There is more.

One thought on “New uses for advertising”

  1. You couldn’t possibly pay for more than a tiny fraction of a mission cost that way.

    For one thing, uncrewed landings don’t make for exactly compelling television, exciting to space nerds like me as they are. Remember, you don’t have cameras conveniently placed to get the shot…

    While they’re on the ground, furthermore, they make even worse television. The Martian rovers, for instance, move a few meters a day.

    I can’t see companies paying huge amounts for the exclusive rights to such televisually boring product.

    Crewed landings would of course be far more exciting, but the costs are exponentially higher as well. You’re talking tens of billions of dollars a mission. Sure, everybody on Earth is probably going to watch at least the landing of the return to the Moon, and the first landings beyond that (which may well not be Mars, but a near-Earth asteroid, a much easier and almost as interesting a target).

    Let’s say we then turn the highlights of the first Mars mission into a documentary, screen it in cinemas. It’s as big a hit as Titanic (though hopefully with a different ending…). You gross, say, 3 billion dollars.

    In the context of a $100 billion Mars project budget, it’s chicken feed.


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