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Updated Jul 31, 2014 at 11:21AM EDT by Brad.

Added Nov 14, 2013 at 05:01PM EST by Don.

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Unidan is the Reddit handle of biologist Ben Eisenkop who is known for providing pertinent scientific information in Reddit threads regarding biology or ecology, often introducing himself with the declaration “biologist here!”

Online History

On September 23rd, 2009, Eisenkop created his Unidan Reddit account. On June 1st, 2010, Eisenkop submitted his first post on Reddit,[7] featuring a giant water balloon popping in slow motion (shown below). The post was not well received, gathering 4 up votes and 5 down votes prior to being archived.

On September 23rd, 2010, Eisenkop posted his first comment with the declaration “biologist here” when describing the role of nipple stimulation in lactation on the /r/IAmA[8] subreddit. On April 5th, 2012, Eisenkop posted a comment in the /r/pics[9] subreddit explaining how pineapples can cause cracks on a tongue due to the presence of the enzyme bromelain, which received over 1,500 up votes prior to being archived. On June 14th, Unidan identified an organism in a photo posted to the /r/pics[10] subreddit as a piure (shown below). Before it was archived, the comment gathered more than 6,000 up votes.

On August 4th, the /r/Unidanfans[1] subreddit was created for discussions related to the popular Reddit biologist. On January 12th, 2013, Eisenkop provided tips on spotting sloths in Costa Rica in a post on the /r/pics[11] subreddit, to which Redditor CrownRabbit responded that he tagged Unidan as “Most Useful Biology Here.” On April 25th, Unidan participated in an “ask me anything” (AMA) thread on the /r/IAmA[13] subreddit, where he answered questions about his personal life and provided several biological science factoids. Before the post was archived, it received upwards of 13,000 up votes and 7,300 comments, making it the 6th most up voted /r/IAmA thread as of November 2013. On the following day, the tech news blog Mashable[2] published an article on Eisenkop’s growing popularity on Reddit. On August 4th, a post about the Unidan Reddit account was submitted to the /r/MuseumOfReddit[6] subreddit. On September 23rd, Eisenkop submitted a photo album to the /r/pics[15] subreddit, containing photographs he had taken over the years as a field biologist (shown below). In the first month, the post received over 24,000 up votes and 1,700 comments.

On November 10th, Urban Dictionary[12] user Cloicabforreal submitted an entry for Unidan, defining it as “a name given to anybody that is extremely knowledgable about a given subject.” On November 14th, The Daily Dot[4] published an interview with Eisenkop,

Banned From Reddit

On July 30th, 2014, Unidan was shadowbanned from the site after engaging in an off-topic debate with fellow Redditor Ecka6 in the comments section of an /r/AdviceAnimals post featuring an image macro of Dory, a Royal Blue Tang fish from the 2003 Pixar animation film Finding Nemo, and caption taking a jab at Qatar’s preparations for the 2022 World Cup (shown below):

In the comments, Unidan chimed in by saying it is misleading to classify a blue jay fish as a crow and corrected that Dory is a jackdaw, to which the OP rebutted by asserting that it is “okay with referring to all of the crow family as crows," begging for a counter-response from the celebrated biologist.

The heated exchange between the two Redditors continued back and forth in the thread, before Unidan ultimately signed off with the following comment:

That same day, Reddit administrator Cupcake1713 revealed in a blog post that Unidan was shadowbanned, a type of ban that virtually confines the visibility of a user’s posts and votes only to oneself, for using several alternate accounts for the purpose of manipulating votes and self-promoting his Unidan-branded content.

He was caught using a number of alternate accounts to downvote people he was arguing with, upvote his own submissions and comments, and downvote submissions made around the same time he posted his own so that he got even more of an artificial popularity boost. It was some pretty blatant vote manipulation, which is against our site rules.

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Top Comments


Can somebody please clarify wtf happened? Maybe update the article a bit?

1) “Hey look that crow is asking for water” wut? What is this about? What crow? Why is it asking for water? What does that have to do with anything?

2) Why is it a picture of Dory?

3) “Unidan chimed in by saying it is misleading to classify a blue jay fish as a crow” yeah no shit, it’s a fish not a bird, how would anyone confuse tho-

4) “and corrected that Dory is a jackdaw” again, wut? How in the name of gosh is a fish a jackdaw?

5) What on earth does this strange conversation about crows have to do with Unidan getting banned? Or was it just included as a commemorative “last conversation”?


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