I'm sure anyone with even a passing interest in SETI is familiar with the WOW message. This post isn't specifically about the message itself, but I was reading a bit about it again and it brought up some thoughts.
In particular, IF our radio SETI programs detected a genuine signal from an ET civilization, would our standards of proof permit us to acknowledge it as such?
We would want independent confirmation of the signal, from geographically distant observatories, and probably over some span of time.
Yet, the most famous of the CETI signals that we have intentionally broadcast, the Arecibo message, was less than 3 minutes in duration. One wonders, if it were to be received by a technological civilization, would they even acknowledge such a message as having come from an intelligent species? If we were to receive a similar message from an alien civilization, would we acknowledge it as such, or just write it off as a computer glitch (or whatever mundane reason you choose)?
Our standards of proof would be quite high, and rightfully so. Yet, our own efforts at transmitting messages would quite likely not meet those standards.
This seems to be a problem.