Twitter is such a fascinating place. Outside of Reddit it’s the last bit of social media I have, and I don’t intend on getting rid of it any time soon. This despite all the mountains of toxic sludge that pepper its landscape. All the Nazis and racists and misogynists that—surprise surprise!—the huge corporation drags its feet on dealing with. All the faux outrage and nuance-free, often facile hot takes that the form of the medium itself encourages. All of that nonsense does sometimes combine to sap you of the very will to live; but the fact is that Twitter—and social media in general—has given a platform to those previously denied it. Leftists, marginalised communities, and other alternative voices that the traditional gatekeepers of the narrative were used to running roughshod over now hold a far greater sway and have the power too to define their own stories. And yes, as expected the powers that be at Twitter have already cracked down on a good number of these voices—and for every valuable voice being added to the conversation another twenty or so despicable ones join the fray too—but nevertheless, the democratising effect has been palpable, and riveting (now let’s move it all onto a public, accountable platform, where the setters of the limits of debate and the arbiters of truth aren’t a bunch of crypto-fascist-bros with capricious ‘libertarian’ whims. Nationalise Social Media 2020).
And then also, you know, there’s the frivolous sh*t too.
Remember that goddamn dress colour argument?
Remember Laurel and Yanny?
Well here is a raven that’s clearly a raven, but that is being presented—jokingly, I think?—as a rabbit, but which some people—genuinely, I think?—actually think is a rabbit?
Rabbits love getting stroked on their nose pic.twitter.com/aYOZGAY6kP— Dan Quintana ðŸ° (@dsquintana) August 18, 2019
I see a raven. Anyone else?— TravellingMan (@SJJB55) August 19, 2019
It looks like you are stroking the head of a crow. Wild.— The Electric Agora (@ElectricAgora) August 19, 2019
Not sure if rubbing left looking rabbit on the nose— êœ±á´¡á´€á´˜É´ÉªÊŸ à² _à² Ê™Êœá´€á´›Éªá´€ (@synbiocs) August 18, 2019
an upward looking bird on the head (ears=beak) pic.twitter.com/RxTMwWD7za
Just saw a bird for the longest time.— Margaret (@tweetsbymidge) August 18, 2019
Clearly a bird. The "ears" are hard and unmoving. Also in the wrong place.— No time for BS (@observantjulie) August 20, 2019
You will not fool me, you rapscallion! pic.twitter.com/9v9ZpIsuLF— GeorgiaðŸ‘ (@OhEmGeo) August 20, 2019
That is not a rabbit, it is indeed a Corvid. Notice the nictitating membrane when it blinks. Instead of moving up and down, it sweeps across the eye horizontally like a windscreen wiper and is translucent.— Greta GG (@GretaGarbolini) August 19, 2019
My rabbit loves too. pic.twitter.com/EDkcHT50eu— Cécile B (@cecile__b) August 19, 2019
Here's my rabbit pic.twitter.com/KuSGNOAAQR— Stan O'Connor (@TourguideStan) August 18, 2019
My duck does, too! But mostly she likes to glare at me over her shoulder when I pap her… pic.twitter.com/HMnEhMT1Wy— Caz (@skippity_doo) August 19, 2019
Sorry but I think your duck is a raven.— Nick Simmonds (@Diacritic) August 19, 2019
The fact that some people responding realize it’s not a rabbit is saving me from those posting all the pro-rabbit responses— Michael Perino (@Avery_the_Grate) August 18, 2019
Me coming to the comments to see if anyone actually thinks this raven is a rabbit to be met with lots of people who seem completely certain it’s a duck… pic.twitter.com/Tc3cBZXu2E— Jesse M (@JesseAMichael) August 20, 2019
So what have we learned today?
Well we’ve learned that yes, it’s possible for a raven to look somewhat like a rabbit given a selective angle and the right amount of willpower.
We’ve learned that it’s become nigh-on impossible to discern the fault lines between sincerity, irony, and mockery.
And—most importantly—we’ve learned that ducks are not to be trusted. Just in general. Don’t let your guard down around ducks. They might appear innocuous enough, paddling there on the sidelines, cartoonishly quack-quacking now and then to provide a fitting aural backdrop for a bucolic day. But. Do. Not. Be. Lulled.