David Gissen, a professor at California College of the Arts, tweets that
Amy Adams writes inter-galactic, digital concrete poetry to communicate with aliens in the trailer for The Arrival.
Here's a link to the official trailer for the film.
More about concrete poetry here.
But is she breaking the law to make contact with aliens?
Here's the text of the (repealed in 1991) U.S. Code of Federal Regulations (not the U. S. Code), dealing with exposure to extraterrestrial contaminants, which used to regulate U.S. citizen contact with extraterrestrial material (including alien life). It was put in place just before the successful Moon landing in 1969.
4 CFR Ch. 5 (1-1-91 Edition)
National Aeronautics and Space Administration
PART 1211--EXTRATERRESTRIAL EXPOSURE Sec.
1211.105 Relationship with Departments of Health, Education, and
Welfare and Agriculture.
1211.106 Cooperation with States, territories and possessions.
1211.107 Court or other process.
1211.108 Violations. Authority: Secs. 203, 304, 72 Stat. 429, 433; 42 U.S.C. 2455, 2456,
2473; 18 U.S.C. 799; Art. IX, TIAS 6347 (18 UST 2416). Source: 34 FR 11975, July 16, 1969, unless otherwise noted. S1211.100 Scope.
This part establishes:
(a) NASA policy, responsibility and authority to guard the Earth
against any harmful contamination or adverse changes in its environment
resulting from personnel, spacecraft and other property returning to the
Earth after landing on or coming within the atmospheric envelope of a
celestial body; and
(b) Security requirements, restrictions and safeguards that are
necessary in the interest of the national security. S1211.101 Applicability.
The provisions of this part apply to all NASA manned and unmanned
space missions which land on or come within the atmospheric envelope of a
celestial body and return to Earth. S1211.102 Definitions.
(a) _NASA_ and the _Administrator_ mean, respectively the National
Aeronautics and Space Administration and the Administrator of the
National Aeronautics and Space Administration or his authorized
representative (see S1204.509 of this chapter).
(b) _Extraterrestrially exposed_ means the state or condition of any
person, property, animal or other form of life or matter whatever, who or
(1) Touched directly or come within the atmospheric envelope of any
other celestial body; or
(2) Touched directly or been in close proximity to (or been exposed
indirectly to) any person, property, animal or other form of life or
matter who or which has been extraterrestrially exposed by virtue of
paragraph (b)(1) of this section.
For example, if person or thing "A" touches the surface
of the moon, and on "A's" return to Earth, "B" touches
"A" and subsequently, "C" touches "B", all of these--
"A" through "C" inclusive--would be extraterrestrially
exposed ("A" and "B" directly; "C" indirectly).
(c) _Quarantine_ means the detention, examination and decontamination
of any person, property, animal or other form of life or matter whatever
that is extraterrestrially exposed, and includes the apprehension or
seizure of such person, property, animal or other form of life or matter
(d) _Quarantine period_ means a period of consecutive calendar days
as may be established in accordance with S1211.104(a).
(e) _United States_ means the 50 States, the District of Columbia,
the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa
and any other territory or possession of the United States, and in a
territorial sense all places and waters subject to the jurisdiction of
the United States. S1211.103 Authority.
(a) Sections 203 and 204 of the National Aeronautics and Space Act of
1958, as amended (42 U.S.C. 2474, 2455 and 2456).
(b) 18 U.S.C. 799.
(c) Article IX, Outer Space Treaty, TIAS 6347 (18UST 2416).
(d) NASA Management Instructions 1052.90 and 8020.13. S1211.104 Policy.
(a) _Administrative actions._ The Administrator or his designee as
authorized by S1204.509 of this chapter shall in his discretion:
(1) Determine the beginning and duration of a quarantine period with
respect to any space mission; the quarantine period as it applies to
various life forms will be announced.
(2) Designate in writing quarantine officers to exercise quarantine
(3) Determine that a particular person, property, animal or other
form of life or matter whatever is extraterrestrially exposed and
quarantine such person, property, animal or other form of life or matter
whatever. The quarantine may be based only on a determination, with or
without the benefit of a hearing, that there is probable cause to believe
that such person, property, animal or other form of life or matter
whatever is extraterrestrially exposed.
(4) Determine within the United States or within vessels or vehicles
of the United States the place, boundaries, and rules of operation of
necessary quarantine stations.
(5) Provide for guard services by contract or otherwise, as may be
necessary, to maintain security and inviolability of quarantine stations
and quarantined persons, property, animals, or other form of life or
(6) Provide for the subsistence, health, and welfare of persons
quarantined under the provisions of this part.
(7) Hold such hearings at such times, in such a manner and for such
purposes as may be desirable or necessary under this part, including
hearings for the purpose of creating a record for use in making any
determination under this part or for the purpose of reviewing any such
(8) Cooperate with the Department of Health, Education and Welfare
and the Department of Agriculture in accordance with the provisions of
(9) Take such other actions as may be prudent or necessary and which
are consistent with this part.
(b) _Quarantine._ (1) During any period of announced quarantine, the
property within the posted perimeter of the Lunar Receiving Laboratory at
the Manned Spacecraft Center, Houston, Tex., is designated as the NASA
Lunar Receiving Laboratory Quarantine Station.
(2) Other quarantine stations may be established if determined
necessary as provided in paragraph (a)(4) of this section.
(3) During any period of announced quarantine, no person shall enter
or depart from the limits of any quarantine station without permission of
the cognizant NASA quarantine officer. During such period, the posted
perimeter of a quarantine station shall be secured by armed guard.
(4) Any person who enters the limits of any quarantine station during
the quarantine period shall be deemed to have consented to the quarantine
of his person if it is determined that he is or has become
(5) At the earliest practicable time, each person who is quarantined
by NASA shall be given a reasonable opportunity to communicate by
telephone with legal counsel or other persons of his choice. S1211.105 Relationship with Departments of Health, Education and
Welfare and Agriculture.
(a) If either the Department of Health, Education and Welfare or the
Department of Agriculture exercises its authority to quarantine an
extraterrestrially exposed person, property, animal or other form of life
or matter whatever, NASA will, except as provided in paragraph (c) of
this section, not exercise the authority to quarantine that same person,
property, animal, or other form of life or matter whatever. In such
cases, NASA will offer to these departments the use of the Lunar
Receiving Laboratory Quarantine Station and such other service,
equipment, personnel, and facilities as may be necessary to ensure an
(b) If neither the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare or
the Department of Agriculture exercises its quarantine authority. NASA
shall exercise the authority to quarantine and extraterrestrially exposed
person, property, animal, or other form of life or matter whatever. In
such cases, NASA will inform these departments of such quarantine action
and, in addition, may request the use of such service, equipment,
personnel and facilities of other Federal departments and agencies as may
be necessary to ensure an effective quarantine.
(c) NASA shall quarantine NASA astronauts and other NASA personnel
as determined necessary and all NASA property involved in any space
mission. S1211.106 Cooperation with States, territories, and possessions.
(a) Actions taken in accordance with the provisions of this part
shall be exercised in cooperation with the applicable authority of any
State, territory, possession or any political subdivision thereof. S1211.107 Court or other process.
(a) NASA officers and employees are prohibited from discharging from
the limits of a quarantine station any quarantined person, property,
animal or other form of life or matter whatever during order or other
request, order or demand an announced quarantine period in compliance
with subpoena, show cause of any court or other authority without the
prior approval of the General Counsel and the Administrator.
(b) Where approval to discharge a quarantined person, property,
animal, or other form of life or matter whatever in compliance with such
a request, order or demand of any court or other authority is not given,
the person to whom it is directed shall, if possible, appear in court or
before the other authority and respectfully state his inability to
comply, relying for his action upon this S1211.107. S1211.108 Violations.
Whoever willfully violates, attempts to violate, or conspires to
violate any provision of this part or any regulation or order issued
under t his part or who enters or departs from the limits of any
quarantine station in disregard of the quarantine rules or regulations
or without permission of the NASA quarantine officer shall be fined not
more than $5,000 or imprisoned not more than 1 year, or both (18 U.S.C.