Pepsi Considered Defending Gamers With A Billboard In Space

Pepsi Considered Defending Gamers With A Billboard In Space
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Imagine looking into the calm night sky and, in the foreground of a galaxy of shimmering stars, seeing a confrontational space advertisement demanding justice for gamers. Last weekend, the website Futurism reported that PepsiCo recently considered launching an “orbital billboard” in space to promote its campaign “against stereotypes and unjustified prejudices against gamers.”

The Russian company StartRocket, which claims it can launch “orbital displays” into space at a 402km altitude, is behind this bizarre and invasive foray into space capitalism. Apparently, it will use 9.14m satellite sails as “pixels.” It is unclear how StartRocket gets funding or whether it is regurgitated science fiction goop wrapped up in an investor flypaper. (StartRocket did not return Kotaku’s request for comment by press time.)

PepsiCo reportedly would use StartRocket’s tech to launch an ad for Adrenaline Rush, an energy drink aimed at the Russian gamer market. A recent YouTube “manifesto”—PepsiCo’s words, not ours—about the product combats the idea that video games are for children, calling that “the most unfair stereotype of the century.”

A press release for Adrenaline Rush explains that “the time has come for change: It’s time to say ‘Stop’ to the disrespect and misunderstanding of gaming culture, to get rid of unfair stereotypes.”

The stereotypes in question, apparently, are that gamers are toxic, unemployed children.

Curious and a little (read: extremely) sceptical of the prospect of space billboards existing outside of the anime Cowboy Bebop, Kotaku reached out to PepsiCo to confirm that this is real. It is, the company explained, but their so-called “exploratory test” was a “one-time event.” 


  • It’s feasible. We can see satellites with the naked eye blinking through the sky as they traverse the outer reaches of our stratosphere so if you had a big enough and bright enough (Lots of LED bulbs most likely) light then you could effectively create a “pixel”. Combine that with swarm logic and you could keep a bunch of these pixel satellites in relative synchronous orbit with each other.

    The main problem would be that to have an effective and readable billboard you’d effectively be creating something that has enough surface area to cause eclipses just like the moon. (That’s no moon!)

    As a side note, Cowboy Bebop, Outlaw Star and even Futurama have billboards in space for space travellers like we have billboards for highway travel. They don’t have billboards visible from the planet’s surface. That’s what the moon is for.

    • It’s very feasible, more than a few companies have floated or courted the idea.

      Problem is the US gets really pissy when ever anyone else wants to do something in space.
      There are genuine concerns though like adding more useless nonsense to the already trash filled orbit (of which they are the biggest contributor ironically)

      I just hope that when that sorta thing starts happening, somebody finally perfects and releases ad blocking glasses.

  • I think I would rather just see giant pepsi logos in the sky than “U SHUD B NICE 2 GAMRZ”

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