SpaceX partnering with Canadian startup to launch billboard ads in space

GEC CubeSat
Image via Annax Labs /Twitter

In a story that sounds like it is out of a science fiction novel, a Canadian tech startup has announced a partnership with SpaceX to launch a digital billboard into space.

The idea comes from the Calgary, Alberta based company Geometric Energy Corporation (GEC). Co-founder and CEO Samuel Reid told Business Insider about the idea, saying anyone will be able to buy advertising space on the satellite.

According to Reid, one side of the CubeSat will have a pixelated screen to display the ads. Since the satellite is obviously far out of the view of any human, a selfie-stick attached to the satellite will livestream the ads on YouTube or Twitch, with views of Earth in the background.

“I’m trying to achieve something that can democratize access to space and allow for decentralized participation. Hopefully, people don’t waste money on something inappropriate, insulting or offensive. There might be companies which want to depict their logo … or it might end up being a bit more personal and artistic. Maybe Coca-Cola and Pepsi will fight over their logo and reclaim over each other,” Reid said.

If you want to have your ad appear on CubeSat, you will have to outbid others competing for the same digital advertising space. Five different tokens can be purchased to control different aspects of the billboard.

  • Gamma tokens – determines brightness
  • Kappa tokens – determines colour
  • Beta tokens – determines X coordinate
  • Rhoe tokens – determines Y coordinate
  • Xi tokens – determines time ad will be displayed

Naturally the tokens can only be purchased with cryptocurrencies such as etheruem, and eventually dogecoin, according to Reid.

The CubeSat will hitch a ride into orbit onboard a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket on the previously announced DOGE-1 mission to the moon. An exact launch date hasn’t been decided yet, but it will take place sometime in 2022.

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