Procedures for Vetting Claims of Extraterrestrial Intelligence
by Principal Investigator H. Paul Shuch
If you are a human wishing to explore (in either a humorous or a scholarly vein) the nature and format of an actual ETI contact, we have provided a Form for this purpose. As for communications ostensibly from ETI, we have established vetting procedures to permit us quickly and efficiently to evaluate all claims which this project may attract.
While I will not attempt herein to detail the exact means by which this vetting process occurs, lest we help those so inclined to craft ever more clever fraudulent claims, I am quick to point out that, collectively, the Signatories to this Invitation possess a diverse background of impressive experience in all the physical, biological, and social sciences. Thus, depending upon the specific kind of evidence that is offered for consideration, we are in a position quickly to assemble an appropriately expert team, schooled in conducting an objective (though appropriately skeptical) evaluation of the evidence at hand. In the few dozen occasions on which such teams have been assembled, claimants have rather quickly revealed themselves when faced with verification tasks that taxed their creativity.
These verification exercises have been instructional for the evaluators as well as the claimants. Although the specific vetting procedures will vary widely as a function of the specifics of the claim, what they all have in common is the assumption that true extraterrestrial intelligence will possess skills and knowledge not in humankind's possession, yet easy for humans to verify once proffered. We feel the burden of proof should fall appropriately upon ETI, to offer compelling evidence not easily explained away.
What form exactly such evidence may take is beyond my predictive powers. However, though I can't define extraterrestrial intelligence a priori, I feel confident I can echo US Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart's concurring decision in the 1964 Jacobellis vs. Ohio obscenity case: "I know it when I see it."
Top of Page
|- Home -|- Hello -|- About -|- Who We Are -|- News -|- Links -|- Search -|- Contact Us -|
Copyright © Allen Tough and Invitation to ETI.
This page last updated 15 May 2011.
Top of Page