Convention proves Mars Society isn't just for scientists, Chicago Tribune

"Founded in 1998, the society has grown to 7,000 members."

Read the story: Convention proves Mars Society isn't just for scientists, Chicago Tribune


  • 19 August 2004: Personal mission to Mars, Chicago Daily Herald

    "... And in fact, probably only 1 percent or fewer of the society's more than 7,000 members do."



  • 19 August 2004: Mars missionaries beam down here, Chicago Sun-Times

    "The society is a private group of about 7,000 Mars enthusiasts, including scientists, engineers, teachers and science fiction writers."


Editor's note: Contrary to the number of 7,000 that Mars Society president Bob Zubrin uses to describe the Mars Society's membership, the real number of paid members, according to reliable sources and statements in Mars Society business meetings, is less than 2,000. A 2003 Mars Society business meeting in Eugene, Oregon heard the society's steering committee report a paid membership number of "approximately 1,600". When Zubrin or his wife Maggie (the society's executive director) cites 7,000 members, what they do not tell you is that they are including anyone who has ever been deemed a "member" regardless of whether they have ever paid dues again. They also include anyone who has ever registered for a Mars Society conference - even if they do not know that they are now a "member".

This membership number also includes people such as myself who have publicly stated that they are no longer a member and have not paid dues in many years. It is also a duplicative list. For some reason I get two mailings - each with a different membership number - even though I have disavowed my membership. A simple database search would be able to identify and delete duplications and provide accurate numbers of those who have paid their dues and those who have not (i.e. those people who have continued their membership). Yet the Zubrins do not take this simple step to provide accurate membership data to the public - or the media.

It is time for Bob Zubrin to come clean about the Mars Society's true membership and stop giving misleading numbers to the media and to explain what these numbers really mean.

False advertsing - especially when knowningly done - is not the way to get humans to Mars.

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This page contains a single entry by Keith Cowing published on August 20, 2004 11:16 AM.

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