The Mars Society – Defunct UK Chapter?

mars closedThis blog is obviously a BIG fan of The Mars Society, and so it’s frustrating that the UK chapter of the society seems to be inactive – it’s surely not because of a lack of interest from followers?

There clearly isn’t anything happening – people are paying subscription without ever hearing anything from the UK society, and the UK chapter’s website hasn’t had an update since 2013. On Facebook, confusingly there are two groups, again, the larger group with 920¬†‘likes’ hasn’t really seen updates since 2013, while a smaller group with 252¬†followers is being kept alive in some way at least by posts by active communications boss at The Mars Society, Mike Stoltz.

What a shame! It seems like bad timing, with interest in spaceflight, and Mars, reaching an all-time high, and the UK Space Conference 2015 upon us, it seems like such a significant organisation with such a following should be doing something at least…

Initially when I contacted the The Mars Society (US) the response was quite dismissive, but Mike Stoltz Comms Director is aware of the issue and had taken the time to write and say he was looking into it, and contacting the relevant people. Running organisations with volunteers is never easy,¬†and there can be all kinds of breaks in communication and activity. However, it’s a dreadful situation to be in where an organisation is accepting donations without even an acknowledgement – whatever the difficulties of dealing with volunteers and online communities, it’s certainly no way to grow the positive and exciting message and work that The Mars Society does.

FB mars page screenshot

Let’s hope something changes soon, there’s simply too much interest in this exciting topic for there to simply be nothing going on in the UK. If The Mars Society doesn’t get it together, then there’ll be another organisation which can be created ¬†to draw together the research, academia and enthusiasts in the UK. C’mon guys!