Archive photos of scientists reveal science is all about looking


The science is mostly about white people watching, usually colored liquids, but also sometimes chickens and grass – at least, according to file photos. So real scientists on Twitter post their favorite performance failures with the hashtag #BadStockPhotosOfMyJob.

It all started when Nicole Paulk, a professor of biochemistry and biophysics at the University of California, San Francisco, was working on a presentation. “I was trying to find stock images that weren’t too stuffy and more realistic, that didn’t show us with tweed jackets and elbow patches,” she says.

Instead, she found a scientist looking deeply at a piece of dry ice. “Nobody on the planet, even a dry ice scientist, would ever do that,” she says — so she tweeted it. Turns out there are a lot more photos where that came from. Then science blogger and former chemist Yvette d’Entremont came up with the hashtag, #BadStockPhotosOfMyJob.

And my friends, there are many looks. And also some nuzzling rock. It gets weird.

Cleaning in the biosafety level 4 lab, please.

Don’t blink, or the chicken wins.

The secret technique of geologists to dig the rocks, revealed.

If you can’t figure out what the chemical is after touching it with your bare skin, well, you can always sip it. (Do not do that.)

The hourglass is advanced scientific equipment. At least she’s wearing her personal protective equipment to watch the grass grow, right?

In science, we must use all your senses:


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