Space

The Netherlands has dozens of radio stations all competing for the same small pool of listeners, so it is perhaps not surprising that the sky is no longer the limit when it comes to stealing a march on the rest.


Q-Music, the third most popular music station on the airwaves, has generated large amounts of free publicity for itself through its new competition: listeners are being offered the chance to be the third Dutchman in space!
Despite the spacey music and photos of astronauts in full kit on its website, what is actually on offer here is a 90-minute trip 100km up into the atmosphere.
The cost of this suborbital space flight, organised by American company Space Adventures, is a whopping great $102,000, plus $4,000 cancellation insurance – which might turn out to be rather important.
The flashy website talks only of ‘future suborbital’ flights – in other words, no-one has actually made one yet. The launch bases are currently being built in the UAE and Singapore, and the radio station hopes they will be ready by 2009.
Still, in the meantime, Q Music will have earned a nice lot of headlines. And if your grand prize never materialises, you will be at least better off than some of the recent winners in the postcode lottery.
With one of the winning postcodes falling in Rotterdam, the city council is wasting no time in stepping in to claim €281,000 in tax debts from 515 of the lucky winners.