Why We Should NOT Look For Aliens – The Dark Forest

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The Universe is incredibly big and seems full of potential for life, with billions of habitable planets. If an advanced civilization had the technology to travel between the stars, at just 0.1% of the speed of light, It could colonize our galaxy in roughly 100 million years. Which is not that long given the billions of years the milky way has existed – so in principle any spacefaring civilization should be able to spread rapidly over huge sectors of the galaxy. And yet we see nothing, hear nothing, the universe seems empty. Devoid of others. This is the Fermi Paradox, which we have discussed in more detail in other videos.

Confronted with the seemingly empty universe, humanity faces a dilemma. We desperately want to know if we are alone in the Milky Way. We want to call out and reveal ourselves to anyone watching but that could be the last thing we ever do. Because maybe the universe is not empty. Maybe it’s full of civilizations but they are hiding from each other. Maybe the civilizations that attracted attention in the past were wiped away by invisible arrows. This is the Dark Forest solution to the Fermi paradox.

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37 thoughts on “Why We Should NOT Look For Aliens – The Dark Forest

  1. If this video made you curious and you like reading great and long sci fi books, check out the three body problem by Liu Cixin, who formulated the dark forest idea for the first time. And with that, we say good bye to the year 12,021. It truly was a wild time, and passed so, so quickly. For us at the Kurzgesagt team it was full of changes and achievements and we learned so much and tried so many new things. And we have so many exciting ideas and projects that we can’t wait to share with you next year! I know I say this often but doing Kurzgesagt really is just such a joy. We only can do this because of you, so thank you so, so much. We appreciate it more than you might imagine. Have wonderful holidays and get safely into the year 12,022. We’ll see you on the other side! – Philipp
    PS: And if you want to help us do what we do, check out our store with sciency products made with love: https://kgs.link/shop

  2. Fun thing is the book series that at least popularized this, humanity used the fact that there would always be some stronger, more paranoid civilization out there to force a vastly stronger alien civilization into a stalemate for a while (till it failed).

    Then when it still succeeded by sheer chance and the wider universe was alerted to the existence of humanity and the alien invaders, the aliens were wiped out near instantly because they posed a larger threat, all it took was a spaceship to launch an RKM.

    Humanity became paranoid and hid in the outer solar system, shielding themselves behind the gas giants out of fear that another missile (or photoid) would hit the Sun.
    They died because as it turns out, godlike civilizations weaponized the universe and laws of physics themselves and collapsed the solar system from 3 (or 4?) dimensions down into 2

  3. existence is not a battle royale, it's a tycoon. You do things when you can, plus you will know what will be until the end. Because you put your name in your very existence.

  4. It’s too late. By many many orders of magnitude larger than any purposeful broadcast in human history we have already signaled aliens. It’s the EMP from nuclear detonations, converting a bit of mass to an insane amount of energy in a infinitesimal amount of time , a significant portion of which is electromagnetic radiation. If aliens are listening they didn’t hear our news broadcasts, tv shows, or purposeful signals because the noise of nuclear bombs is far beyond a quadrillion times more powerful.

  5. I believe in the last idea: that we are not yet philosophically grown up enough to understand the intentions of foreign species. I also believe that we can outgrow our primitive violent instincts and learn to deal with them like grown ups so they don't do much harm anymore.

    But for that we at least need to get rid of certain forms of political systems (dictaorships as they nurture disinformation) and religions (all the insane ideologies that run as religions these days, like catholicism, hinduism or islamism) and replace them with better alternatives. Like a religion that is 100% in sync with our current scientific understanding of the universe.

    That's a looong way to go for humanity.

  6. If we cant even unite Earth, and we fight amongst eachothers, how come we even think of contacting aliens?, i guess research and tech.

  7. @Kurzgesagt – In a Nutshell It'd be nice to mention where the main idea of this video came from – "The Three-Body Problem" by Chinese sci-fi author Cixin Liu. It's apparent that you either read this book, or heard about it from somewhere else, and then proceeded to produce this video. Thus it deserved to be mentioned here.

  8. Up until 08:40 its the books prediction, after tha timestamp its the Kurzegesagt interpretation of how he hopes it would go further.

  9. yah man if we could shoot light speed nukes at each other wed be fucked. good thing we have no clue how to shoot things that fast

  10. Previously talked about is that a black hole
    can shoot off objects at a significant fraction
    of the speed of light. Civilizations could use
    black holes to annihilate each other, not by
    building a black hole bomb, but shooting
    bombs WITH the energy of the black hole,
    with the black hole bomb as a final resort if

  11. I guess Warhammer 40k was right? There the humans yell the aliens are evil soulless heretics… 😬

  12. Thanks for the insight, I'll go to Dr Steven Greer's youtube channel and do some CE5 contact as soon as this video is finished.

  13. That’s why I find the Voyager message to be completely irresponsible.
    Who did they think they were, to make that decision for humanity!

    It’s like posting your friend’s address, where you live, on the damn internet because “why not”…

    Sure it’s hopeful, but fuck, don’t put all of humanity in danger for your unproven and shaky, at best, idealism.

  14. imagine this, the first message from space:"we've been trying to reach you about your planets extended warranty "

  15. seems like this only works if we are on one planet. if someone wanted to wipe humanity out and we are in space stations and on other planets/moons, this is a horrible plan that could backfire on another civilization.


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