Stellar Jurisdiction

Star Laws
There is an interesting article over at SpaceNews today regarding the peculiar and sudden imaging restriction imposed by NOAA on SpaceX in the middle of their Falcon 9 launch last Friday. While conflicting reports had been surfacing, including from NOAA themselves, it seems that the truth of the matter has finally begun to surface, and in so doing may be handily managed by the fleet of lawyers.

It boils down to restrictions on images of Earth taken from orbit, and a number of bureaucratic hoops one must jump through in order to proceed with that sort of event. What really gets my goat however, is the notion that one government (apparently our own) can claim to exercise rights over imaging of the entire Earth from points in orbit which would only briefly even be over top of the US.

It raises in my mind the much larger and more important question of: who “owns” the moon and other planets? Or at least, who claims to? I like to think that Elon and co. can simply get to Mars, set up whatever they like, and then suggest that if someone doesn’t like it they can come there and ask him to stop. The idea that the US (or any nation) would claim to have jurisdiction over the moon or Mars – when so abjectly failing to get us there themselves – is frustrating to say the least. I’m looking forward to seeing that all play out, sooner than we ever expected!

References:

Vodafone, Nokia and SpaceX to install 4G mobile phone network on the moon

Vodafone, Nokia and SpaceX to install 4G mobile phone network on the moon

The moon will have a 4G mobile network installed next year, according to plans set out by Vodafone and Nokia.
The mission, organised by space exploration company PTScientists, will be the first privately funded moon landing.
Nokia masts will be launched on a SpaceX rocket in 2019 from Cape Canaveral air force station in Florida.
The network will enable Audi lunar exploration vehicles to communicate with each other and with a base station. The 4G signal, provided by Vodafone, will also be able to transmit high-definition video streaming of the moon’s surface.

This ambitious and exciting project is scheduled for 50 years after NASA first accomplished getting humans to the lunar surface!
(Australian Financial Review)