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If we discover alien society...who do we send?

mxmarksmxmarks Registered User regular
edited November 2009 in Debate and/or Discourse
So I was watching (without sound) clips from the new ABC show "V" and all the sudden I had a really interesting thought.

For those who are totally unaware of "V", it's a show where aliens suddenly reveal themselves to Earth, and say that they're friendly and we should all hang out. Obviously, they're lying, but that's not the point of this. From the clips I was watching I noticed the one attractive woman was the spokesperson of the aliens. She was doing the TV interviews, she was the giant face on the spaceship -- she was our first look at alien life.

And it made me think -- that's a huge deal. Now, I know (and if you'd like to know, you can look it up...) that on the show, she's not exactly what she seems, but this isn't a discussion about the show. Let's say these aliens DO look humanoid. How did they settle on the hot chick? Do they put that to the vote? Is she the leader, and they're just lucky they have a hot leader? What would humans think if the leader looked like former baseball player Otis Nixon, and his giant face was looking down at us from the sky? What if it was someone who looked like Janet Reno? What if it was the traditional grey looking alien?

Obviously humans were much more welcoming of the aliens because she was hot. She looked like us, and was attractive, so everything was cool. I'd be willing to be if she looked like a grey alien we would have shot her out of the sky instantly.

So this is what has led me to my question. It's not about how we'd react to different looking aliens - it's about what WE would do.

Let's say we've discovered a planet like Earth, with all these people living on it. These aliens look close enough to human that we could blend right in. We're going to say "hello" for the very first time, as Earth. Not the United States. Not England. Not China. But as Earth we've all decided to open dialogue and try to make this new planet - that is totally unaware of us - our friends.

Who do we send to give the first impression? What factors into that decision?

mxmarks on
XBL: MXrox - PSN: mxmarks - twitch.tv/mxmarks - "Yes, mxmarks is the King of Queens" - Unbreakable Vow
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Posts

  • Dread Pirate ArbuthnotDread Pirate Arbuthnot Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Oh god, no one. I'm of the firm opinion that we've fucked things up so bad on Earth, where we are all humans anyways, that if we start interacting with aliens we're just initiating our own doom.

    fhBqOWH.jpg?1
    Oathkeeper Updates Monday/Wednesday/Friday
  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    An Asian person.

    As in, someone from the continent of Asia.

    No, I'm not saying that because I happen to be Asian. We could send an Indian person too. But demographically speaking...
    Spoiler:

    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • HKPacman420HKPacman420 Registered User
    edited November 2009
    .....Jodie Foster?


    Seriously though, it would have the very best diplomat on the planet, though I have no idea who that would be.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • ChanusChanus Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    James Carville and Mary Matalin... see, that way, they'll get both sides of the coin and will embrace our highly nuanced political spectrum.

  • Signum Ex SonitusSignum Ex Sonitus Registered User
    edited November 2009
    Yeah I can't think of anyone who wouldn't somehow fuck up and start a war.

  • MikeManMikeMan Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    the odds against encountering alien life that looks like us are so astronomically high it barely is worth considering

    HOW DO YOU FUCK UP BAGELS. YOU BOIL THE WATER. PUT IN THE NOODLES
  • Tyler the GreatTyler the Great Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    i got it

    (and by got i mean i would tell them to blow everyone up and not bother, then i'd nail an alien chick)

  • CouscousCouscous Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Carl Sagan if he weren't dead.

  • RichyRichy Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    William Shatner.

    RichyFlag.gifsig.gif
  • theSquidtheSquid Sydney, AustraliaRegistered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Kevin Rudd, because I don't think he's traveled enough in his tenure as Prime Minister.

    Mythbusters once cut a car in half and drove around in it to see if it would run. Even they were less poorly conveyed.
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Conversely, what should we do with alien life that looks different to us? Like, would it be worthwhile to not reveal our true forms so we could better ingratiate and establish communication?

    Dis' wrote: »
    Cancer is when cells stop letting the body mooch off their hard work - clearly a community of like-minded cells should isolate themselves and do the best job each can do, even if the rest of the body collapses!
  • CantidoCantido Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    .....Jodie Foster?


    Seriously though, it would have the very best diplomat on the planet, though I have no idea who that would be.

    On principle. Just to spite religious assholes. That one guy at the table, suggesting we don't contact them at all because they might not believe in God. I wanted to reach across the tv and choke the fucker.

    steam_sig.png
  • David_TDavid_T Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Richy wrote: »
    William Shatner.

    You'd have to send Patrick Stewart with him, just to keep him from getting us all blown to hell by acting like he's Kirk.

    "What, she looked hot? I've been with alien chicks before."

    "That was a character you played! For gods sake, man!"

    My vote goes to Morgan Freeman.

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    occasionallywearsahat.com, my rambly ramblings of ramble
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    David_T wrote: »
    Richy wrote: »
    William Shatner.

    You'd have to send Patrick Stewart with him, just to keep him from getting us all blown to hell by acting like he's Kirk.

    "What, she looked hot? I've been with alien chicks before."

    "That was a character you played! For gods sake, man!"

    My vote goes to Morgan Freeman.

    That's actually a pretty good choice.

    Dis' wrote: »
    Cancer is when cells stop letting the body mooch off their hard work - clearly a community of like-minded cells should isolate themselves and do the best job each can do, even if the rest of the body collapses!
  • RocketSauceRocketSauce Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Bill Clinton

  • VeritasVRVeritasVR Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Stephen Colbert, as himself, as the President.
    Spoiler:

    CoH_infantry.jpg
    Let 'em eat fucking pineapples!
  • Richard_DastardlyRichard_Dastardly Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    I wonder what might happen if the aliens closely resemble an animal we raise as food, like cows or chickens. Or, if the aliens raise creatures that closely resemble humans as livestock.

    ಠ_ರೃ wrote: »
    cats are douches
  • JectJect __BANNED USERS
    edited November 2009
    Whoever we send should in theory be able to walk into a pack of Chimpanzees or Gorillas and just as easily make peace or meaningful dialogue.

  • SniperGuySniperGuy Also known as Dohaeris Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited November 2009
    Uh, how about trained astronauts? Someone that's been in space before, who is also trained at being a diplomat? What with the ISS and all I'm sure we've got some.

    An actor is probably a poor choice.

  • JectJect __BANNED USERS
    edited November 2009
    I wonder what might happen if the aliens closely resemble an animal we raise as food, like cows or chickens. Or, if the aliens raise creatures that closely resemble humans as livestock.


    Humans will inevitably eat alien creatures someday, if we don't blow ourselves up.

  • CptHamiltonCptHamilton Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    There are kind of a lot of questions the answers to which would determine whom we should send. Are the aliens technologically advanced? More so than we are? Do we speak their language? Do we understand their culture at all? Are they aggressive and/or warlike? Assuming we have any idea: what characteristics are important to them in a public representative? Are we trying to get something out of them or are we just attempting to initiate first contact? Are they aware of other alien species? Are we?

    Consider that many people of any given ethnicity have a hard time telling members of other ethnic groups apart. Consider further that crows can tell individual humans apart but we can't tell individual crows apart. It's so improbable that aliens would even be able to tell one of us from another without extraneous cues that judging on aesthetics is ridiculous. Send a team composed of the world's best negotiator, linguist, mathematician, biologist, anthropologist, and astrophysicist. That should pretty much cover the bases.

    OptimusZed wrote: »
    Jesus, people. This thread is like a running gunbattle with stupid bullets.
  • Richard_DastardlyRichard_Dastardly Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Ject wrote: »
    I wonder what might happen if the aliens closely resemble an animal we raise as food, like cows or chickens. Or, if the aliens raise creatures that closely resemble humans as livestock.


    Humans will inevitably eat alien creatures someday,
    Right, some sort of fried chicken/corn/reeces peanutbutter cup hybrid creature that'll fatten us up for the aliens' laserbeam slaughterhouse.

    ಠ_ರೃ wrote: »
    cats are douches
  • JustinSane07JustinSane07 __BANNED USERS regular
    edited November 2009
    Aerosmith and Harrison Ford.

    It isn't even a question really.

  • ChanusChanus Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Cantido wrote: »
    .....Jodie Foster?


    Seriously though, it would have the very best diplomat on the planet, though I have no idea who that would be.

    On principle. Just to spite religious assholes. That one guy at the table, suggesting we don't contact them at all because they might not believe in God. I wanted to reach across the tv and choke the fucker.

    That was a movie... you know that was a movie, right?

  • Andrew_JayAndrew_Jay Registered User
    edited November 2009
    David_T wrote: »
    My vote goes to Morgan Freeman.
    Nelson Mandela.

    But seeing how he's already 91 and won't be around forever, my second choice would be Morgan Freeman impersonating Nelson Mandela.

  • JectJect __BANNED USERS
    edited November 2009
    Send a team composed of the world's best negotiator, linguist, mathematician, biologist, anthropologist, and astrophysicist. That should pretty much cover the bases.

    And a poet.

  • JectJect __BANNED USERS
    edited November 2009
    Also, maybe we should figure out what the aliens eat and give them something similar to that from Earth. If they don't utterly die from it they may recognize the gesture of good will.

  • SynthesisSynthesis Honda Today! Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Chanus wrote: »
    Cantido wrote: »
    .....Jodie Foster?


    Seriously though, it would have the very best diplomat on the planet, though I have no idea who that would be.

    On principle. Just to spite religious assholes. That one guy at the table, suggesting we don't contact them at all because they might not believe in God. I wanted to reach across the tv and choke the fucker.

    That was a movie... you know that was a movie, right?

    Oh, I'm sure he does.

    Fundamentalist Asshole: For all we know, Mr. Advisor, we're not even aware if they believe in God or not.

    Me to the TV screen: I wish I could hate you to death.

    There are 40,000 reasons not to contact aliens. That is possibly the worst, and definitely one of the bottom ten.

    Orca wrote: »
    Synthesis wrote:
    Isn't "Your sarcasm makes me wet," the highest compliment an Abh can pay a human?

    Only if said Abh is a member of the nobility.
  • mxmarksmxmarks Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Chanus wrote: »
    James Carville and Mary Matalin... see, that way, they'll get both sides of the coin and will embrace our highly nuanced political spectrum.

    If a planet of aliens has never met an earthling, and the first thing they see is an image of James Carville's face, they will, without a doubt, nuke the entire planet.

    Unless the planets inhabitants actually look like the typical grey aliens, because then we'd have to send him. He's the only one who already would look like them.

    XBL: MXrox - PSN: mxmarks - twitch.tv/mxmarks - "Yes, mxmarks is the King of Queens" - Unbreakable Vow
  • Sunday_AssassinSunday_Assassin Registered User
    edited November 2009
    Brock Lesnar

    Show em who's boss

  • RUNN1NGMANRUNN1NGMAN Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    David_T wrote: »
    Richy wrote: »
    William Shatner.

    You'd have to send Patrick Stewart with him, just to keep him from getting us all blown to hell by acting like he's Kirk.

    "What, she looked hot? I've been with alien chicks before."

    "That was a character you played! For gods sake, man!"

    My vote goes to Morgan Freeman.

    That's actually a pretty good choice.

    I was going to say Morgan Freeman!

  • JectJect __BANNED USERS
    edited November 2009
    If Aliens arrive to our planet first, kill a bunch of people, and then resurrect those same people, how do we respond, to such a graphic display of power? What is our protocol

  • ChanusChanus Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Ject wrote: »
    If Aliens arrive to our planet first, kill a bunch of people, and then resurrect those same people, how do we respond, to such a graphic display of power? What is our protocol

    Interbreeding.

  • DrakeDrake Blow it all up ForeverRegistered User regular
    edited November 2009
  • NostregarNostregar Registered User
    edited November 2009
    Drake wrote: »
    Who do we send?

    Gary Fuckin' Busey.

    *snip*

    I thought we wanted them to like us.

    Spoiler:
  • RetabaRetaba A Cultist Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    A robot would probably be best.

  • CognisseurCognisseur Registered User
    edited November 2009
    Jon Stewart, cuz he won't dick all that shit up.

  • DrakeDrake Blow it all up ForeverRegistered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Nostregar wrote: »
    Drake wrote: »
    Who do we send?

    Gary Fuckin' Busey.

    *snip*

    I thought we wanted them to like us.

    Man, after a few rails and some shots, everyone will be getting along great.

  • CptHamiltonCptHamilton Registered User regular
    edited November 2009
    Ject wrote: »
    Send a team composed of the world's best negotiator, linguist, mathematician, biologist, anthropologist, and astrophysicist. That should pretty much cover the bases.

    And a poet.

    I considered putting some sort of artist on the list, but for a first contact scenario I honestly don't see the point. Aliens are unlikely to even perceive the universe in the same subset of any of the various spectra we do. If they have hearing it's likely to be effective over a different register of frequencies. If they have vision it probably won't be the visible spectrum as we consider it. If we are able to achieve contextual, linguistic communication at all rather than communicating purely via mathematical logic statements I cannot imagine a case where, at first meeting, either side will be capable of appreciating the poetry of the other. Their music or visual arts may be aesthetically pleasing but they're just as likely to be completely meaningless. Consider a painting done by an artist whose visual range overlaps with yours only for 20% of the visual spectrum and whose vision is a composite formed by three eyes with prismatic rather than focal lenses. It would look like a red (or blue) mess. Consider a poem written by a person with linguistic aphasia who speaks a language you've never heard but with the auditory register of a bat. Honestly, what use would a poet serve?

    OptimusZed wrote: »
    Jesus, people. This thread is like a running gunbattle with stupid bullets.
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