Vice President Candidate Statement: Paul J. Banyai

It is time to enter the 21st Century. We need to keep up with the times in order to keep growing and improving. We need to become a single united social network representing the dreams and hopes of an age of true space colonization.  I have been a member of the Moon Society since 2001. While I was aware of the Artemis Society for several years before joining the Moon Society, I did not join it because it was already starting to look outdated and ineffective. When I originally noticed the statement about “Our Virtual Lunar City” my first thought was “how awesome that this group is so tech savvy that they have something like Everquest or Ultima Online.” However, I soon learned that instead of a cutting edge representation of lunar colonization it was instead an 80’s style text game with some basic instant chat included in it.

I joined both the Moon Society and the Mars Society a few months before graduating college with a bachelor degree in geology with a personal focus on space. I kept my membership in the Moon Society since it was more focused on what individuals can.  We need to expand our connection to lapsed/non-subscribed members and to new potential members.  Our presence on Facebook is in fact almost double that of the Mars Society with over 2800 people familiar with us which makes me wonder why we have less than 200 active subscribed members out of at least 1600 enrolled members. Assuming that a quarter of our enrolled members are on Facebook we could have over 2000 potential new members. We need to give them an incentive to become paid members, to stay paid members, and to invite their friends to become members. I would revitalize our social network pages with current Moon Society events and activities as well as teasers of membership benefits and how volunteers can help get us back to the Moon. I would also bring our internal communication system into the 21st Century and bring back the eye catching wow factor that the Moon Society can actually lead the way to lunar settlement.

Outside of online social networks there countless individuals who only show their interest in space by purchasing space related items i.e. books, magazines, DVDs, etc. For example we have “endorsed the Space Settlement Initiative as the most realistic and achievable method for encouraging private enterprise in outer space“, yet there are countless people who are purchasing Virtual land deeds without any true forum for representing their interest in space colonization. These people are essentially stuck with the same archaic situation as our text-based Virtual Lunar city. There can be no Space Settlement without first real representation.