Yes, participation, in group effort sense, isn't required in co-op. Although, you may want a companion when raiding npc villages or taking dungeons. We can also host special events like a dungeon world raid or glow stone mining in the Nether world. It just depends upon what the community wants.
Everything is shaping up to look like this will be a go. Either when MC 1.8 Beta comes out or late september I'll be taking full control of the server and I'll be making the server available to Star Control members. I plan on starting a brand new map with a good seed. I figure there will be at least one public building. This will be for safety when people are just starting or spawning from danger. We could have pre dug mineshafts if you guys want as well.
The server is rented from Servercraft and they build physical dedicated servers. The server is physically located in Phnx. Arizona, USA and hopefully the pings aren't huge to our European members. If there is a large amount of Euro interest and it's horrible for them I may look at finding another host. We'll just have to see.http://www.servercraft.co/
I plan on keeping the server up for a while. Two or three months. If interest wanes, I 'll save the map and shut it down in November or December.