Friday, August 16, 2013

IAU Suggests May Welcome Public Input to Naming Exoplanets

The International Astronomical Union issued a statement on August 14, 2013 that they have changed their official stance on two things: 1. assigning popular names to the numerous extrasolar planets being discovered, and 2. allowing the public to be involved in that naming process.

“It is therefore in line with a long-established global tradition and experience that the IAU fully supports the involvement of the general public, whether directly or through an independent organised vote, in the naming of planetary satellites, newly discovered planets and their host stars,” the online statement said.

This new stance came as a surprise to many.

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