Ben Eisenkop about to eat a bird


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Updated Sep 10, 2020 at 03:20PM EDT by andcallmeshirley.

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.[5] 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[17] 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.

[-1 Ecka6 1 day ago Because most people don't know anything about birds and call the black ones crows! Most of the time they're not wrong in calling them crows either. I've never seen people argue over whether something is a jackdaw or a crow in my life, it's like arguing over whether someone's a human or an ape, doesn't make sense to argue it. Also, calling them a corvid is less specific than saying a jackdaw so I'm not sure what point you're trying to get across there If you research crows then you'd know that jackdaws and such are a part of the crow family permalink source save save-RES parent report glve gold reply Unidan[+4] 1 day ago [- Here's the thing. You said a "jackdaw is a crow." Is it in the same family? Yes. No one's arguing that. As someone who is a scientist who studies crows, I am telling you, specifically, in science, no one calls jackdaws crows. If you want to be "specific" like you said, then you shouldn't either. They're not the same thing If you're saying "crow family" you're referring to the taxonomic grouping of Corvidae, which includes things from nutcrackers to blue jays to ravens So your reasoning for calling a jackdaw a crow is because random people "call the black ones crows?" Let's get grackles and blackbirds in there, then, too Also, calling someone a human or an ape? It's not one or the other, that's not how taxonomy works They're both. A jackdaw is a jackdaw and a member of the crow family. But that's not what you said You said a jackdaw is a crow, which is not true unless you're okay with calling all members of the crow family crows, which means you'd call blue jays, ravens, and other birds crows, too. Which you said you don't. It's okay to just admit you're wrong, you know? permalink source save save-RES parent report glve gold reply continue this thread

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

[+] Unidan 20 hours ago sigh SO WHY ARE YOU SAYING THAT ITS TRUE? READ WHAT YOU WROTE. Why would they need to be corrected if they're not wrong in the first place? I'm fine with informing someone like, 'more specifically, that's actually called a blue jay', not 'that's not a crow, it's actually a blue jay'. THAT'S WHAT I WAS DOING, THEN YOU TOLD ME I WAS WRONG. You are claiming "the crow family" is a thing that you can call a crow. That is not true. If anything, you should claim it for the genus, which at least makes slightly more sense. Nope, that's not how it is in Ireland, crow is used as the loose term, mainly for rooks, jackdaws, and hooded crows etc. It's not used to describe a particular bird. 23 Now who's being pedantic? It was an example, yes, for those living in America. If you live in Russia, you'd say Hooded crow, jeez. Show me where someone calls a jackdaw a crow, or a rook, in any nature article or scientific journal. Please, show me. permalink save parent report give gold reply

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.

Search Interest

External References

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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"?


in reply to Cian

For the crow is asking for water thing, I'm pretty much sure it is reffering to this:

I THINK (keyword) the commentarie make fun of the internet audience who is more interested in cute crow than in human tragedy in Quatar,
But I admit the rest of the conversation about Dory being a crow or whatever doesn't make any sense to me too…


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