At present we have only one agreed public policy for handling the detection of an extraterrestrial intelligence (ETI), the 'First SETI Protocol' of 1989, which guides action in the immediate aftermath of detection, even though SETI (the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) constitutes an active search for such a detection. The purpose of this paper is to set out areas in which policies might fruitfully be developed, including reviewing the rationale and investment in SETI, handling ETI artefacts, and approaches to direct contact. 'Negative' possibilities will be examined, for example, whether an ETI artefact or data should be purposefully destroyed.
- Active SETI
- Extraterrestrial intelligence
- Risk analysis
- SETI protocols