Ars Pro Week Day 3: We promise not to shoot Eric Berger into orbit – Digitalmunition




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Published on April 1st, 2020 📆 | 8284 Views ⚑

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Ars Pro Week Day 3: We promise not to shoot Eric Berger into orbit

If you’re reading this, you’re probably interested in space. I sure am. It’s why I took a job writing for Ars nearly five years ago—the editors promised me I could cover the space industry full time, however I wanted.

And so I have. Few of my peers possess this kind of limitless freedom. For example, when I worked for the Houston Chronicle, I always had to be at least slightly deferential to the local NASA facility, Johnson Space Center. No longer. Great people. I have a lot of friends there. But if NASA is taking 11 years to develop a parachute, y’all are doing it wrong.

I have two goals with my space coverage. One is to get as close to the truth as possible. The second is to kick this industry in the ass so humans actually get out there into the cosmos and begin exploring the worlds around us. I was born a few months after Gene Cernan and Harrison Schmitt climbed aboard the ascent stage of the Lunar Module, blasted off the Moon, and came home. And I’m rather disappointed that humans have yet to dip their toes into deep space in the nearly half-century since.

I’m not going to live forever, and I’d like to see us do some cool stuff in space in my lifetime, OK? That’s the grand total of my journalism ambition. If your company is more concerned about winning government contracts that never end instead of actually doing stuff, then Ars is going to write about that. And if your main goal is to build a fleet of Starships to settle Mars, well, that’s going to get more favorable coverage. The folks at SpaceX may or may not succeed. It’s a crazy plan. But damn if they’re not going for it.

You know where this is going

So you probably figured out by now that this post is going to ask you to subscribe to Ars Technica. You don’t have to, of course. And if money is tight, please don’t. But if you can afford it, just know you’re supporting fearless journalism.

Look around at a lot of space publications—and make no mistake I like and respect my peers—and see who is sponsoring a lot of the coverage. It’s the big legacy contractors who are building the big-ticket space items like the Space Launch System or Orion spacecraft. There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s business. It’s how things work.

But I didn’t get into the business of journalism to help aerospace companies fatten their coffers. I got into the business of space journalism to figure out what the hell’s going on, ask why we haven’t been back to the Moon in 50 years, and to find those serious about solving these problems. So if you subscribe to Ars, that’s what you’re supporting. Thanks for considering it.

We’ve got two subscription options:

Ars Pro ($25 per year) subscribers at the Ars Pro level get the following benefits:

  • No ads anywhere
  • No tracking scripts (though Twitter and other embeds have their own scripts we cannot control)
  • “Classic View”—a widescreen-optimized old-school Ars homepage layout
  • Access to subscriber-only forums where the real Ars graybeards hang out
  • Full-text RSS feeds of all our articles
  • PDF downloads of all our articles

Ars Pro++, currently discounted to $40 with the coupon code springPlusPlus20.

Pro++ subscriptions get everything from the Pro tier, with two additional benefits:

  • Your choice of a YubiKey 5 NFC ($45 value) or YubiKey 5C ($50 value), both of which add an extra layer of security to your computing experience
  • An optional “clean reading view” that strips Ars articles down to their essentials for easy consumption

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