The Discovery Channel recently premiered an episode of their Curiosity series entitled Curiosity: Did God Create the Universe?
In this special, world-renowned physicist and cosmologist Stephen Hawking explores the role of God in the creation of our universe. After a very interesting hour-long journey through major scientific discoveries and theories, Mr. Hawking abruptly concludes the show with the bold and highly controversial statement:
Therefore, it’s my view that the simplest explanation is; there is no God, no one created the universe and no one directs our fate.
While the resulting debate from this statement has been focused primarily around the religious implications, I couldn’t help but think about the risky role marketing played. Not only did Discovery heavily promote the show, but Intel, Nissan North America and University of Phoenix were all presenting sponsors – each with a strong marketing presence throughout the evening.
I imagine it would strike fear in the heart of most marketers to attach their name to such a heated statement. And although I respectfully disagree with Mr. Hawking’s conclusion, I must commend the courage of the marketers who sponsored this show. There are much easier and safer places to reach the same audience, but they stuck to their guns and proved that their support of innovation, science and education goes beyond advertising. What do you think?