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Hello there! I've given a few presentations about space law and how it might affect efforts towards space settlement and I was very pleased to take part in a podcast with Voices From L5, who are supported by the National Space Society, about this.

You can hear it here: http://projection3.blogspot.co.uk/2015/04/voices-from-l5-space-law.html

Looks neat, Adam! That's definitely going on my playlist.
When I see articles about space law in the popular press it looks like space has already been sold to megacorporations, independents not welcome. Built in source of conflict; government V corporations V independents.
Hello there..

My latest article on this subject : Luna and the Law of Property

Great stuff, Adam! I strikes me as a real shame that the OST is there getting in the way of space development. I know the intent was to avoid war in space, but I have the feeling it will only delay it — it's a bit ridiculous to think that a thousand years from now, when the number of people living off Earth far outnumbers those living on it, nobody will be able to own the land their house is on (or, as you point out, refuse entry to any neighbor who demands it).

So, lacking any legal framework for property ownership, property ownership will be settled by non-legal means.

It would be so much better, both in terms of peaceful coexistence and in terms of encouraging investment, if we had a legal path to property ownership now, instead of settling it with guns later.
Thanks Joe Smile Yes, this is the point that my studies of Space Law are leading to. Every once in a while I give talks about these aspects about Space Law and when I discuss this lack of property rights it always provokes a strong reaction from people who are interested in the commercial development of space! The lack of property rights for territory or land is clear; the more ambiguous and difficult subject relates to rights in anything you produce from lunar soil or material from asteroids (for example).

I'm currently looking at the law relating to Antarctica and the deep seabed as these are in my view similar from a legal perspective to space. Fascinating subjects!
Right. The difference is, we don't need to ever have people living on the seabed (which in most ways is more difficult than space, and already densely inhabited by a rich ecosystem) or in Antarctica (which is admittedly much easier than space, but ultimately a dead end). But we do need (and certainly will have) people living in space, in numbers that eventually far exceed the number of Earthlings. That rich civilization will not just get by without property rights.

The OST authors were shockingly limited in imagination. Sooner or later it's going to have to be thrown out.
I recognize 2 useful theories of property: A pragmatic theory equating ownership with control, and an ethical theory where property derives from work of the hand and sweat of the brow. Neither of these needs a sovereign State. A State involved in the picture may act to align control in line with or against property as described by the ethical theory. Absent a State on the scene law tends to devolve to whatever person or persons are able to organize and effect, by force of arms, what they see as right.

Absent a State declaring sovereignty, an international recognition of what constitutes piracy and universal jurisdiction against pirates would be useful.
My new article on Space Law, which looks at these points, is in the latest newsletter from the Astrosociology Research Institute, which happens to be a special edition celebrating the 50th anniversary of Star Trek.

This starts on page 8 and a pdf of the newsletter can be found here : http://www.astrosociology.org/Library/PDF/Newsletters/ARI-Newsletter_Vol-5_Iss-2_12-2016.pdf

Happy New Year!
Slides from my recent talk about Space Law at the British Interplanetary Society:

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