NASA to consider commercial branding and endorsements

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NASA, the United States’ agency is to study making space a place for corporate brand sponsorship to combat low budgets and offset high costs of space travel.

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Its chief administrator, Jim Bridenstine, said NASA would consider selling the naming rights of its hardware to private companies in what would be the first product placement initiative for the agency (The New York Times).

Such sponsors could include astronauts on cereal boxes and logos in space (Verge).

Bridenstine said he is forming a new committee focused on studying how NASA can be more commercial.

However, advertising NASA’s mission would mean Congress would need to change the law. Since its inception, NASA has been prohibited from commercialising or promoting products.

Key facts

  • Jim Bridenstine started talking about corporate sponsorships for NASA at a NASA Advisory Council Meeting in August. A video of the discussion is on YouTube.

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