Friday, September 07, 2007

NASA Marketing Contest

NASA Watch points to a contest to pick a better NASA slogan than "NASA explores for answers that power our future" and "Inspiration + Innovation + Discovery = Future". The prize in this fun contest (not a NASA-approved one; don't expect your slogan to be used) is a space DVD of your choice. I'm indifferent to the current NASA proposal, but I thought the detailed bullet points behind it need to be better backed up by NASA's current plans, which to me seem to reduce or eliminate many of the efforts that the slogan is supposed to be based on.

Anyway, my suggested slogan isn't very catchy, but here it is: "NASA: Proud Sponsor of the $50M/Year NASA Centennial Challenges!" (In case you don't get it, they might get $4M this year, which is less than 1/4,000th of NASA's budget, if they're lucky).

Update (Sept 8): The entries (and voting) have moved here.

I've decided on a more serious slogan. Iif you want some more serious ones, or funny ones, or ones that are just lame and in bad taste, you'll see it all on the actual contest sites.

Anyway, here it is:

"NASA: Science, Security, and Economy"

or perhaps:

"NASA: Exploration for Science, Security, and Economy"

or, to include all of NASA:

"NASA: Space and Aeronautics for Science, Security and Economy".

It's not inspirational they way "To Boldly Go" or other similar rousing phrases are. However, I'm not trying to come up with an inspiration phrase. I picked this to link NASA to these 3 goals
that are straight out of NASA's Vision for Space Exploration. The VSE Goals section says "The fundamental goal of this vision is to advance U.S. scientific, security, and economic interests through a robust space exploration program".

I'd like to link NASA to these 3 goals in the minds of the public, and perhaps more importantly, to the NASA employees and contractors, from top to bottom. The public, and NASA workers, should wonder what they're doing if their assignment isn't directly related to at least 1 (and preferably 2 or 3) of these goals in an obvious way. It goes without saying that "Economy" applies in the broad, national sense; benefiting the economic interests of a particular state or corporation is fine, but by itself totally insufficient to check off that box.

Although there are 3 components to this slogan, I hope the "food pyramid" shape wouldn't be used to graphically support it ...