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Space Show Annual Campaign Letter For Dec. 8, 2022:
I Have A story to tell
Listeners to The Space Show:
Boy, do I have a story to tell you! A story which I believe illustrates why supporting The Space Show is so important. On Oct. 6 of this year, I received a PR announcement from an unknown person at an unknown public relations company, Lucky from PR Collaborative. Getting public relations announcements from all sorts of organizations and entities is nothing new for the Space Show. About 3-6 such announcements are sent me weekly. They promote authors and books, fundraising success for entrepreneurial and sometimes larger space companies, events scheduled or planned well, you name it. However, back on Oct. 6, the Lucky promotion was to see and possibly talk about on air the upcoming film, "Good Night Oppy." This caught my attention so I replied to Lucky (all too often I don't respond to these public relation notices for a variety of reasons) and told him I was interested in the follow up. From then until December, a back and forth went on with Lucky and his successor about the film and a Space Show program focused on "Good Night Oppy" which was a documentary film with a special twist on the Mars rovers Spirit and Opportunity plus the JPL folks on the project. When I left Las Vegas for my Thanksgiving week visit back in CA, Lucky and I had a sort of arrangement to talk about the film on Tuesday, Dec. 6 but it was not firm. When I got back from my trip at the end of November, I contacted Lucky to firm it up, find out who the guest was, all of that. On December 1, Elizabeth of the same company, took over coms with me and worked very hard to set up a Space Show program about this film. This was not easy because the original public relations blast was for certain days and times much earlier than Dec. 6 and for much shorter time periods than a regular Space Show program. In fact Elizabeth made several requests for just a 30-45 minute program but I held strong for The Space Show format at the minimum length of 60 minutes. I explained to her our live broadcast format with audience participation and time for in-depth audience participation with the guest. Back and forth we went but it was not until late on December 2 did I hear from Elizabeth that we had a confirmed 60 minute program with Doug Ellison of JPL and the rover team. More about this in a minute.
Late on the evening of December 5th, I got an email from a friend and listener telling me she had just watched the film based on The Space Show newsletter for the week and was blown away. She told me to watch it before the interview the next night. So I watched it on my iPhone abut 10 PM the night before The Space Show program. I'm glad I saw it. The film, "Good Night Oppy" is an absolute treasure. I hope all of you see it. If you do, post your reactions and thoughts on the blog for Dec. 6th with Doug Ellison. But let me continue the story. After watching the film I was so excited that I emailed Elizabeth late at night and told her I saw it and how impressed I was and how excited I was to have Doug on the show. By the way, Doug was a main player in the film and a huge participant in the Oppy (and Spirit) story.
Tuesday night I called Doug for The Space Show program. What was supposed to be a 60 minute program was closer to a 90 minute Space Show program. Not only was Doug an exceptional guest, just like he was exceptional in the film, but getting the inside on the Mars rovers, and not just Spirit and Oppy, but also the inside on the JPL people that made all this possible, well, it was very special. That's about all I can say about it. For sure Doug will be a guest again on the show. He said he enjoyed it, did not mind staying the extra time and of course he would come back. What a shame had I relented and agreed upon just a typical PR blast for 30 minutes.
Ok, why do I tell you this story and what does it have to do with our Annual Fundraising Campaign. It has everything to do with the campaign. Let's start at the beginning which goes back to the initial email from Lucky on Oct. 6 of this year. Luck did an outreach to The Space Show because of our reputation and being respected in the space media and educational world. Having some promotion on The Space Show platform was desirable. Why is that so? Let's take a look at that, OK?
The quality of The Space Show platform is dependent on the guests on the show, the listeners and their participation in the live show and on our blog. You the listener are a huge part of the success and the reputation of The Space Show and because of your quality, The Space Show is sought after for so many PR announcements and programs as I said early on are many per week. The Space Show was contacted for this film promotion (along with others) because of what you the listeners and the guests have made out of this program. What you have done over the years cannot easily be measured but it sure speaks loudly in the story I am telling you. And as you will see in a minute, your support of this listener supporter space program has made it all possible.
When it came time to schedule Oppy for the program with Elizabeth, I argued for the normal Space Show format with dates, times, and program length. Elizabeth and I guess those in the background gave me alternatives more to their convenience but eventually we did a highly sought after Tuesday evening program for 60 minutes. What does this say about The Space Show? It tells me that film makers, the JPL players, all of the team valued The Space Show platform enough to go outside their box to do a regular Tuesday evening Space Show program. That program aired Tuesday night, Dec. 6 at our usual time. Once again I applaud you the listener, the guests and for sure the donors/supporters because the reputation The Space Show has and the ability to secure such a program as we did Tuesday night. A program that was way outside the framework of what the PR company wanted to do. The outcome speaks well to The Space Show's quality and reputation. To be sure, I credit you, guests and listeners, with this reputation.
I guess by now you are really wondering what this story has to do with our fundraising campaign. It has everything to do with it because without proper funding, we are either extremely limited in doing these programs and securing top level guests, or even worse, we won't have the resources to do such programming. Unfortunately, funding is everything for The Space Show and since we are guest and listener supported, I plead the case for your financial support. As much as I personally dislike fundraising and asking people to financially support us, I also want very much for people to have a say and a part in The Space Show. I want them to be able to take some ownership and pride in what we do and how we do it. So on the one hand, I am not comfortable in asking for money for The Space Show but on the other hand, I am thrilled that I am providing a path for you the listener and the guest to take credit for what The Space Show has created these past decades and is still creating as we move into 2023. Our reputation and our success does go to you, far more than to me, as both the show and myself as host would be nothing without you. So this is my opportunity to thank you. I also wanted to let you know about both my discomfort in asking you for money to support The Space Show but also my happiness in enabling you to take some ownership and have great pride for what we have done and will continue doing.
I have one more brief example story to tell you. I promise, I will be brief. Space Show friend Fremont John sent me a note a few days ago with an article in which Dr. Avi Loeb, a guest that has been on the show many times, opined that there might be another explanation for the creation of the universe other than the Big Bang. After reading it, I sent Avi a note asking him to return as a guest to tell us about it as this topic has been addressed multiple times on the program. Within ten minutes Professor Loeb accepted and will return on this and other subjects this Friday, Dec. 9. Avi Loeb would not keep returning to The Space Show and responding so quickly if not for his respect for the program, our questions and listeners. Once again, that is you. You ask the questions, you help make this reputation. You have earned this respect. Avi is a great example of this. However, I must stress to you that we could not do this without proper funding and support for The Space Show.
We are now in our campaign to raise funds to support The Space Show for 2023. Our campaign ends Dec. 31 as we are a 501C3 nonprofit with the One Giant Leap Foundation. We do need your support and donations to continue what we do here at The Space Show which I hope you value as do others wanting to tell their story on our platform. Please donate to us, we do need the help and the support. PayPal is the easiest way to support us. Our PayPal link is in the upper right corner of our home page, www.thespaceshow.com. Using Zelle with your bank is another simple way to support us. We bank using Chase. The email for Zelle is firstname.lastname@example.org. If you want to mail us a check, please make it payable to One Giant Leap Foundation and mail it to OGLF, C/O Dr. David Livingston, 11035 Lavender Hill Dr, Ste. 160-306, Las Vegas, NV. 89135. I am happy to answer any questions you have about the show, our campaign, this letter or anything else.
Thank you for all that you have done over the years to make The Space Show what it is today. The market, the guests, the listeners, all of it constantly validates The Space Show and we have you to thank for it.
My best to you all for a good, healthy and safe holiday season and New Years.
Your support is very much appreciated. Please remember, Keep Looking Up!
In addition, please be sure to listen to the special Dec. 7th program where I discuss 2023 program plans and campaign plans.
Dr. David Livingston
The Space Show
Dec. 8, 2022