Twitter quest to identify and honor an unnamed attendee.
March 11, 2018 8:44 AM   Subscribe

On March 9th, illustrator Candace Jean posted a photograph and question on Twitter in the hope of identifying a woman attendee at the International Conference on the Biology of Whales.

Of all the male participants from 10 countries, she is the only person listed as "not identified". She is of course a female person of color.

There's a follow-up thread, some fascinating and tantalizing leads but no definitive answer yet.

Why yes, I did wonder if the awesome MeFi hive mind could help, hence this post.
posted by humph (13 comments total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
(I'm afraid I have nothing to contribute to the quest to identify the attendee, but I have never seen Candace Jean's illustrations before and they are delightful, so thank you for that!)
posted by skycrashesdown at 9:01 AM on March 11, 2018 [1 favorite]

This is viral marketing a for a new Neutral Milk Hotel project, isn't it?
(also it is infuriating and I hope an answer comes to light)
posted by Stonestock Relentless at 9:21 AM on March 11, 2018 [2 favorites]

skycrashesdown - I'm new to her work too and similarly delighted to have discovered them!
posted by humph at 9:24 AM on March 11, 2018 [1 favorite]

Related: Minorities in Marine Biology
posted by Miko at 9:51 AM on March 11, 2018 [2 favorites]

The in-laws are descending upon me soon, so I couldn't read through the entire twitter thread, but that's so awesome and I can't wait to get back to it, I've already put two books in my cart about women in science and arts based on comments from that thread.
posted by SecretAgentSockpuppet at 10:11 AM on March 11, 2018 [1 favorite]

This is great, and it's also hilarious how it follows internet protocol for any thread that goes on more than a couple dozen comments. People start asking questions that were answered above. People chime in with "it's obviously this person" when that was covered above. A random dudebro troll stops by to say the discussion is a waste of time. Repeat.
posted by goatdog at 10:19 AM on March 11, 2018 [7 favorites]

I saw this on Twitter yesterday, and I am really looking forward to seeing if they can figure out who she is. Thanks for posting.
posted by AMyNameIs at 10:19 AM on March 11, 2018 [2 favorites]

I'm not completely sure she is a WoC. I'd say most probably, but a bouffant hairdo and enough of a tan to show up in b&w was also a thing in the early seventies for some white women. So they probably shouldn't entirely restrict themselves to looking at women of color.
posted by tavella at 10:33 AM on March 11, 2018

I'm not completely sure she is a WoC. ...
posted by tavella at 1:33 PM on March 11 [+] [!]

I'd have to disagree. There are several other people of color in the photo, including the man directly on the left, and her complexion is darker than all of theirs.
posted by FirstMateKate at 11:14 AM on March 11, 2018

Solved - Sheila Jones.
posted by unliteral at 4:59 PM on March 11, 2018 [4 favorites]

On the one hand, the thread and detective hunt was cute. On the other, it's sort of amusing that it took Twitter a lot of hours and effort to get an answer an email to the convening Smithsonian could also have done. It might have created a greater sense of urgency to have a lot of people caring about it, but there was a known source of info, so this was a roundabout way to get at it.
posted by Miko at 6:12 PM on March 11, 2018 [2 favorites]

The New York Times has picked up the story too (subscription needed).
posted by humph at 8:45 AM on March 20, 2018 [1 favorite]

And The Root
posted by hydropsyche at 4:35 PM on March 21, 2018 [1 favorite]

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