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Elon Musk and Starlink note that Mars will not follow silly Earth laws

Does this surprise anyone?

elon musk goes to mars
Image: Curtis Silver / KnowTechie

Recently, users of Starlink internet from SpaceX noticed something strange in the software’s terms of service. The app’s terms of services claim that Earth’s laws won’t govern life on Mars. Instead, the SpaceX colony on the red planet will abide by its own set of “self-governing principles.” 

That made many people wonder whether Elon Musk can do that independently and create his own laws on Mars. 

Elon Musk, the CEO of SpaceX, had already spoken extensively about colonizing Mars. During those talks, he expressed his intention to create his laws on Mars. He said that all Martian colonies would rely on a set of self-governing principles, and they would be the basis upon which all disputes will be resolved.

Starlink’s terms-of-service note:

“For services provided on Mars, or in transit to Mars via Starship or other colonisation spacecraft, the parties recognise Mars as a free planet and that no Earth-based government has authority or sovereignty over Martian activities. Accordingly, disputes will be settled through self-governing principles, established in good faith, at the time of Martian settlement.”

Furthermore, the app’s service terms suggest that Mars is a free planet and that no Earth-based government can claim any authority over the Martian colonies and Martian activities. That puts the app’s service terms in line with everything Elon Musk has suggested during his public appearances. 

On at least two occasions, Elon Musk insisted that all disputes on the red planet will be resolved “in good faith” and solely on a set of “self-established laws” when a Martian settlement is completed. 

By doing so, Musk ignored practically all international space laws dating back as far as 1919. According to international space law, each country governs the airspace above its territory. In 1944, during the Chicago Convention, those principles were reiterated and reinforced. 

Nowadays, international space policy and law issues fall under the scope of international bodies such as The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) and the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS). 

According to some experts, Elon Musk’s ideas for self-governance are considered nothing but wishful thinking

Simultaneously, Erwan Beauvois, a space system engineer at SpaceX, said that space needs to be considered free for everyone. The statement Beauvois made is in line with the “Declaration of the Rights and Responsibilities of Humanity in the Universe,” a declaration prepared by the Earthlight Foundation. The Earthlight Foundation is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to prepare humanity for expansion beyond planet Earth.

Elon Musk plans to start sending people to Mars as early as 2024. According to Musk, he aims to send one million people to Mars, which will require three flights per day or approximately one thousand flights per year. Each craft will be able to receive up to 100 people.

What do you think? Would you take a one-way trip to Mars? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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