Friday, July 14, 2006

Alien TV Part 1

We know our astronomers have searched for radio signals from other worlds. It's only reasonable to assume that comparable alien civilizations do the same. And I know I've seen references in SF to locating/viewing ancient Earth TV shows far in the future and far, far away. Apparently that isn't too far from reality. There's a movement afoot to develop telescopes that will receive television signals from distant planets. See the article Alien TV

Again, it's reasonable to assume a sufficiently advanced alien civilization might have developed the same technology. They could be watching Fear Factor, Survivor or...Hell's Kitchen. If they are, perhaps that's why they haven't made contact?

Think about it.

Would you want to contact an alien civilization where the 'entertainment' consists of forcing people to eat obviously unsavory things? Or where fellow humans are abandoned in primitive areas to squabble among themselves--and what happens after the vote out ceremony done with all the pomp and formality of a death sentence? Then there's Hell's Kitchen where some insane human screams and vilifies an assortment of other harried humans and over what? Food?

Add to that the nightly news coverage of crime, war and dirty politics. Really, what's an alien to think? I sure wouldn't want to make friends with folk like that and if I saw them coming, I'd think 'There goes the neighborhood.'

On the other hand...maybe these sorts of television shows and news coverage entertain them. That's kind of scary. I'm not real sure I'd want to meet them {g}

To be fair, I understand that conflict--even violence or implied violence--is essential to most genre fiction. We want to see our heroes be victorious, to win the day. But our genre fiction has something these reality shows don't have--character growth. And good character growth can best be revealed in...you guessed it! Books.


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