Waldemar Ingdahl wrote:
I often hear the exclamation "oh why isn't there a generous texan oil billionaire that could give us some money". I don't think that is a viable strategy to develop any technology or good. The billionaire simply provides to little money. What cryonics needs is to get commercialy viable, then it can use the full advantage of a market economy. Unfortunately, cryonics companies have to get a lot more professional in their marketing and customer service, and they have to show clearer product value (I think they still are relying too much on "nanotech Santa Claus"). Then they will receive the capital to expand. Depending on good hearted patrons is not a good alternative.
I full agree that cryonics does need a first-class marketing and advertising effort to get the word out in a dignified, positive and "non-kooky" way. Also certainly the techniques to freeze the body must be preserved even though it does look like 21st Century Medicine made some substantial breakthroughs.
I feel that you and others are doing an "all or nothing" take on approaching wealthy individuals. I am not advocating this in general at all; I am simply saying Robert Bigelow IS a very good possibility for us and so he should be approached properly. I realize the odds are against us in trying to get him to help the Prometheus Project or any other related organization but we should at least try!!
With his interest and money going into a space cruiseship and paranormal investigations I see him as much more open to cryonicists who are seen by the mainstream as strange. If any billionaire might help us it would be him! There is too much negativity of this list. People who will explain why things won't work instead of why they might. And alot of what is said on the list negative or positive is simply talk that comes to naught ultimately.
Should we only approach the very wealthy and do nothing major on our own as common members, of course not! But we must investigate and use every method at our disposal to put the work forward. We must do all we can to pool our time and resources together to make sure the research is done as many have already said.
I have sensed the frustration of cryonicist leaders who say there are already enough millionaires signed up that if they each just gave a small portion of their fortunes for research that would be enough to fully fund all research and make the necessary breakthroughs over the next decade or so. I realize there is already a billionaire signed up who has not bothered to donate much for research and I think that is very disappointing. Only Saul Kent puts "his money where his mouth is." But they do not so the middle-class members must muddle along and do the best they can with the available resources. I do not feel this reality means we should stop reaching out to specific very wealthy individuals who seem like they might be receptive.
Alex Future Bokov wrote:
From: Alex Future Bokov <firstname.lastname@example.org> Subject: Re: What cryonics need is a billionaire patron
I agree with Waldemar about commercial viability and professionalism. However, a few million bucks might help bridge the gap to profitability. Those among us who are good with PR/fundraising might consider doing more outreach to potential investors/benefactors... this guy and others. Perhaps we should pencil in an informal meeting on this topic in Berkeley at the end of the week...
Alex Future Bokov has the right idea and positive attitude that the movement needs!! A few million might make a major difference if spent on a thoughtful and clever advertising campaign and I have already read here how marketing and grad students each year look for projects to assist in.
It cannot hurt to take the time and effort to approach Robert Bigelow and others like him. I think someone like Robert Ettinger or Charles Platt would be best.
PENCILING IN AN INFORMAL MEETING TO DO THIS AT THE EXTRO IS A GREAT IDEA!! There should be a transhumanist/cryonicist group that routinely meets, plans and advances the ideas spoken of here. My one major concern is that I have heard many cryonics leaders are not extropians and do not attend the Extro. I believe this includes Charles Platt and Robert Ettinger among others. So some sort of regular communications must be opened up with them. And I realize that within and without the cryonics community there are some hard feelings and differences of opinion that have hamstrung efforts to move forward.
Daniel Lee Crocker spoke of the kookiness of the Art Bell show but in defense of Art I will say besides some rediculous guests he has some prominent scientists and visionaries like Robert Bigelow. In the mass media Max More and his wife Natasha along with Romana Muchado and her friends not to mention other extropians have allowed themselves to be shown as kooks by tongue-in-cheek reporters and photographers. Their own personal websites do not exactly help lessen this image. Anyone with a computer can use a search engine to read these articles...usually proudly displayed on their websites!
I realize that we all have the right to be our true selves and have fun doing it but the world does watch and take notes. I realize that some extropians are also cryonicists (I would think all would be) but perhaps we should leave the approaching of the rich to prominent cryonicists like Platt, Kent and Ettinger. Then again the persuasive and enthusiastic style of Max More and his wife might convince someone like Robert Bigelow to throw in with cryonics in terms of major funding. Husband and wife "ambassadors" such as Max and Natasha or Robert Ettinger and Mae might also be a good idea. Somehow I could just see Max and Natasha being very effective with Ted Turner and wife Jane Fonda...if they could just get to them!
I hope that Alex Bokov is able to get something substantial going. And I hope that the Extro is a great success. I most likely will not be able to attend so I hope to read many postings that in detail explain how it went! And I would like to see photos of it put on websites for me to check out! I hope you all have a great time and learn alot. And should any shouting matches start please settle it with a "rock 'em, sock 'em robot boxers toy set!" My bestfriend and I settled differences that way as kids and it really does diffuse angry feelings because who can stay mad when a little blue or red plastic boxing robot has its head suddenly pop off!! I'm sure Doctor Moravec will love it! Take care everyone!