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Prix 1987 - 2007

ORF Oberösterreich

Jean-Marc Philippe

"Keo" is a project by Jean-Marc Philippe of France, which provides every Internet user with an opportunity to send a message to the distant future. On the "Keo" homepage Jean-Marc Philippe collects messages and letters from millions of people all over the world. These messages are burned on special CD-ROMs and sent into orbit in a satellite. The orbit of this satellite is designed so that it will return to earth in 50,000 years. Whoever inhabits the planet earth then will have the opportunity to rebuild a CD-ROM player with the help of the assembly instructions included, in order to read the messages.

"Keo", a winged satellite, is being launched in 2001 to orbit the Earth for some 50,000 years before return ing to deliver a collection of messages from the world of today to the world of tomorrow. Every man, woman and child is invited to contribute to this fresco of messages which will reveal the richness and diversity of the human experience at the dawn of the third millennium. "Keo" gives each individual the equivalent of four uncensored pages in which to express themselves in the language of their choosing, in which to bequeath a unique and personal portrait to this collective work.

This collective non-profit project is open, free of charge, to all those who would like to participate. It is being realized solely through the voluntary, inter disciplinary contributions of time, skills, products and services of its many partners, whether in a corporate or individual capacity. This policy was de liberately adopted so that the project would not unintentionally divert funds from more urgent, humanitarian causes; it would remain free of any commercial or political influence and be truly embraced as a gift from the people of today to future generations 500 centuries from now.

The "www.keo.org" website was created at the beginning of 1998 both to inform the public of this invitation to contribute a message and to serve as a medium for the writing and collection of same. So far, the site has received messages from 61 countries and territories representing all continents, with ages ranging from 7 to 84 years old. In the manner of its medium the Internet, "Keo" seems to transcend cultural and generation barriers and, through allow ing the individual "voice" full liberty of expression is, paradoxically, creating a momentum of unity.

Once the satellite is launched, all messages will be made freely accessible on a database for everyone to read. For the true value of the project today lies in the opportunity for us all to share in one another's hopes, dreams, fears, doubts and deepest con victions. Through doing so, we may come to redis cover our common humanity.