Foundation Media is one of the three primary arms of the Foundation phase of TMP, bearing the dual role of both a community program and a for-profit venture.
No Business Like ... Edit
Foundation Media is based on the realization that space advocacy is essentially about show-biz, while space development is about real estate. It is an often overlooked fact in the space advocacy community that one MUST entertain in order to hold people’s attention. A chronic problem with many space advocacy groups has been the cyclic expansion and contraction of their membership rolls due to the inability of these groups to maintain public interest. Initially drawing an audience based on the novelty of their vision or ideas, their inability to continue to renew this novelty through a continuous production of new media results in a perception of inactivity and a loss of interest. The legendary ‘father’ of the western space effort, Werner Von Braun, well understood that in order to accomplish his dream of a national civilian space program he needed to communicate that vision widely and diversely and he understood the great power of the visual image in that. And so he and his various supporters teamed with people in many areas of art and media to disseminate Von Braun’s vision of space development in a diversity of media. One of the most unusual of partnerships to emerge in this effort was with the legendary Walt Disney who produced a series of animated films appearing on TV illustrating and dramatizing the Von Braun vision. Historians now consider these media partnerships and these films and other forms of mass media as crucial in inspiring a national public interest in a space program that had, until that time, been largely dominated by the military. This is where the meme of a national civilian space program with progressive scientific objectives became a mainstream idea. This was the true origin of NASA.
The first incarnation of Foundation in the form of the First Millennial Foundation has already confronted the problem of cyclic public attention. The aging of the original TMP book and the effect of this on public interest is a clear example of why it is crucial for TMP to become a generator of a continuous stream of novel media. Indeed, TMP is vastly greater in scale, scope, and time compared to the objectives of Von Braun. TMP will need to be continually renewed through its evolving media for several generations. A volunteer organization will not be able to do this alone. The scale and sophistication of media production required itself requires a full-time workforce and that means –at least in the present– a paid workforce and thus a venture that profits on the sale and distribution of this media.
On With the Show Edit
Thus we arrive at the notion of Foundation Media; a media production firm whose objective is to develop and produce a growing diversity of professional media relating to the themes of TMP. This would include books, video and film, software, games, and many other forms. It may also involve the creation of edutainment venues that can showcase this media. It would also provide a source of professional quality artwork, architectural, and industrial design in support of other TMP activities such as those of the Foundation Promotional Effort, though eventually it may supersede many earlier promotional activities of the Foundation Community Network, which would then tend to evolve to focus on more social and cultural activities.
Foundation Media also has the potential to become the economic basis for one of the first planned (albeit loosely) communities created under Foundation. A logical possible scenario for the founding of Foundation Media would be the assembly of a creative team of friends who share the various facilities of their work, such as studio space, computers, render farms, and high bandwidth Internet links. This group could become one of the key initial ‘think tanks’ cultivating the TMP vision and its visual styles. This facility, in turn, could form the basis of a live-in/near work facility in the manner of traditional artists enclaves that could evolve into a full TMP settlement with this media development and production as its primary industry. This scenario is consistent with the way other digital age ventures have developed, particularly during the first ‘dot-com’ boom.
Long-term, Foundation Media would become a significant corporate entity in the constellation of businesses built around the Foundation CIC and may ultimately become the primary network media facility shared by all TMP related settlements. It would become the chief publisher of TMP related ‘packaged’ media, a serial media production network for things like TV distributed among all TMP communities and elsewhere, and would eventually develop a journalism arm to gather news within TMP communities and disseminate it through these venues.
- TMP Media Gallery Project
- TMP 2.0 Book Project
- TMP Film/Video Projects
- Futurist Video/Radio/Net-Media Projects
- M3 Game Project
- TMP Model Series
- Future Fair/Museum of Tomorrow
- ↑ "The Disney-Von Braun Collaboration and Its Influence on Space Exploration" by Mike Wright, Marshall Space Flight Center Historian