London – If aliens make contact with Earth, they had better hope a man receives their message.
For women are unlikely to want to reply to the extra-terrestrials.
A poll shows that while only 47 percent of females would respond to a message from outer space, two-thirds of males would – although it is not known whether this is because they imagine the alien as some Star Trek-style beauty wearing a silver bikini.
Researchers from Oxford University asked 2 000 Britons whether we should reply, telling them: “Imagine a scenario in which scientists receive an unambiguous message from extraterrestrials (alien life forms) on a distant planet.”
Overall, 56.3 percent were in favour of getting in touch and 14 percent against, they told the British Science Festival in Coventry. Oxford University astrophysicist Dr Peter Hatfield said that while the premise of survey may seem unlikely, the chance of aliens getting in touch within the next 100 years, based on the number of planets in the universe, is around one in ten.
First contact would most likely be a radio signal that would have take decades to travel the vast distances to reach us.
He would be happy to respond but, perhaps bearing out the survey’s findings, his research colleague Dr Leah Trueblood said she would not.
Although humans have already beamed several messages into outer space, the late Professor Stephen Hawking advised that we ought not to – as aliens would probably find us and destroy us.
When the poll asked who should speak to the aliens, 39.3 percent chose “a team of scientists”. Only 14.8 percent opted for “elected representatives” and 12.3 percent for a “citizen’s assembly”. The least favoured option, perhaps unsurprisingly, was for a worldwide referendum, at 11 percent.