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Should We Be Trying to Make Contact with Extraterrestrials?

CSIRO’s Parkes radio telescope
Published: 12:12 PM 2/16/2015

... beam the entire contents of the internet, porn and all, to other star systems.

Darren Orf

Another debate popped again this week, one that's been talked about and argued over for years now—whether we should be actively seeking out and sending messages to habitable planets in the search for life beyond Earth.

Known as Active Seti (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence), some researchers and scientists want to continually broadcast messages to known habitable planets in an effort to reach a new alien species. But many disagree.

People like Stephen Hawking and Elon Musk think a more measured and thought out approach makes more sense, and that historically, races of people who have happily greeted newcomers quickly found them to be conquerors.

The idea of Active Seti is to encode messages in powerful radio signals and send endlessly for centuries to solar systems with habitable planets. According to The Guardian, Seth Shostak, the director of the Seti Institute, wants to just beam the entire contents of the internet, porn and all, to other star systems.

So do you think it's a good idea, or at the very least, should it be something we debate before sending the entire contents of 4chan and PornHub at an unsuspecting civilization alien civilization?

And if you do think we should send messages, what's the kind of stuff we should be sending? The DNA double helix? Episodes of Single Female Lawyer?

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