Re: Celestial property rights?

From: Adrian Tymes (
Date: Thu Jul 27 2000 - 20:29:42 MDT

"White, Ryan" wrote:
> Who owns the moon?

No one "owns" the moon right now. Multiple international treaties aside,
there ain't no one there to enforce property rights if you go up and
squat on the land.

Until it makes, or at least approximates, economic sense to, no one will
bother trying to enforce territory claims on the moon. (Which is not to
say that various con artists won't try to sell you such, just that the
deeds are worthless. And I suppose you *could* try to buy a moon rock
on Earth, but good luck trying to get any of the current holders to

Now, once you get inhabited lunar colonies, or at least a functioning
moonbase (even fully robotic, so long as it is producing something of
significant monetary value), that may start to change; the current
treaties may be altered or conveniently forgotten at that time, where
they prove confining. But not until it actually happens (or, at least,
there is no reasonable doubt that someone's within a year of making it
happen, and even then probably not until after two or more entities
contest ownership of what they've put up there and/or are actively using
up there).

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