22 September 1998
- Habitat (Strange)
Billboards on ISS?
NASA is toying with the idea of offering advertisment space on the space station. Is this a good idea or not?
In Science & Government Report, a newsletter published by Technical
Insights, a unit of John Wiley & Sons, Inc., NASA lays out a plan to offer advertisment space on the outside of ISS for various corporate
names and logos. The concept of advertisement in space isn't per se
a bad idea, but it does beg the question of who is allowed to do the
advertising and who receives the money derived from it?

As ISS stands it will be a governments (plural) owned establishment
publically financed and owned. Can NASA unilaterally offer this
service without consulting with their international partner space
agencies or more importantly will the American taxpayer allow their
$30B baby to be tattooed with crass commercials. :)

On the other hand the Russians have already indicated that they plan
on raising funds through selling advertisments on their parts of ISS
including the FGB (never mind who paid for it :)

Some of us have visited this subject before, but then again we weren't
advocating using public property to financially benefit the well
connected either. Will NASA open these opportunities up to an open
bid auction or will it limit participation to the usual suspects that
have the inside track at NASA?

If this were a completely privately financed and operated space
facility this wouldn't be an issue - every viable surface would have
a logo on it.

Source: PR News Wire

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22 September 1998
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