Our sister blog Engadget reported today that U.S. Congressman Ken Calvert (CA) has proposed selling ad space on space agency vehicles in order to recoup some of our nation's investment. However, as humorous as I find the image of the space shuttle decorated like Tony Stewart's NASCAR ride, the punch line of the story is that another company immediately complained that Calvert had poached its idea.
For $5,000, JP Aerospace will place your logo or ad on a high-altitude balloon, float it to the edge of space, and take snapshots for your subsequent use.
Such visionary concepts could spark a cognitive shift in our thinking about public property. Think of the hundreds of thousands of military vehicles going unadorned -- commercial space going to waste. In my mind, I see a tank rolling through Basra, with these words painted on its side: "Who, me? I never read tanks."
The Transamerica logo would fit nicely on the side of the Washington Monument. Could we project the Flomax logo on Niagara Falls? ICBM's sponsored by Fedex. Comedy Central's State of the Union Address. The next American-organized Israeli-Palestinian summit, sponsored by e-Harmony.com.
Or, if we're serious about space advertising, why not fund our return to the Moon by selling advertising spots on it? All night, every night, the Moon just hangs there in the sky, useless as a blank billboard waiting for the next cheesy radio promotion to start.