Five Elements for a Successful Extraterrestrial Direct First Contact Event:
Global reach ensures that the entire planet is involved in the introduction. It can be achieved by leveraging the world wide network of news media.
Speed is necessary to ensure transparency and prevent secrecy. It can also be achieved by direct contact with the global news media.
Transparency is important to reassure the world population. The introduction must be free of governmental and political entanglements.
Security is critical in order to maintain peace and order. Provisions must be made to limit initial contact, set forth a careful diplomatic process and provide assurances that human sovereignty on Earth will be respected.
Process is the means by which the First Contact event leads to the introduction, which in turn leads to the relationship.
I know that this sounds a bit over the top for an event that will probably never happen. However, I think it comes down to common sense. We have yet to grasp, in popular culture anyway, that extraterrestrial First Contact of any type would be an event that changes perspective, and perhaps much, much more, for every human on the planet. That means every person has a right to be well represented and take part in the introduction and the relationship. That can’t happen if it consists of a series of negotiations held behind closed doors between scientists, politicians and government agents. That’s not to say that the scientific community and governments should not be the key players in the introduction and the relationship. In fact, it is these people that we will rely on to move the process forward. Transparency means that the introduction and the process need to happen out in the open and for the entire world to see. Ultimately, all humans should be able to witness the process unfolding and all nations should be able to participate in the decision making.