I Fucking Love Science
| Someone is wrong on|
I Fucking Love Science (or IFLS for short) is a site ostensibly engaged in promoting science through the use of memes and macros on social media. It started as a Facebook page in 2012, created by Elise Andrew, and is also now a popular science website, euphemised to IFLScience.
The Facebook page has grown exponentially in popularity (launch day it received 1,000 followers, in March 2012 it had 2.8 million followers, as of November 2015 it has 22 million) and is maintained by a team of administrators. Since its creation, the page has gradually drifted from being somewhat interesting ("This Week in Science" is about the only worthwhile thing left) to being a lot of clickbait cute/gross animal photos.
Popular science and clickbait
“”You don't love science. You're looking at its butt when it walks by.
|—Cyanide & Happiness|
While admittedly the underlying goal of IFLS is a worthwhile one (to popularize science on social media for the masses), the page has gradually followed a general trend of decline in its quality. This can be presumed to be from its popularity, since the need for mass appeal generally means a watered down version of science reporting, often focusing on cute animal photos. At one point, it turned out that the page consistently failed to properly credit the authors of the majority of its images.
52 Of The Most Common Myths and Misconceptions Debunked In One Infographic typifies IFLS's approach: debunking popular myths with a clickbait title and kitsch infographic (although this infographic was already in circulation before being featured by IFLS).
Sexism from followers
Apparently, many followers of the page were unaware that Elise was a woman. After sharing her personal twitter on the page (which included a real picture of herself), followers littered the post with sexist comments (from comments like "are there kitchens in space?" to endless threads discussing her looks).
- Stoianovici, Alex (25 Ian 2013). "Mad about science. Interview with Elise Andrew, creator of I Fucking Love Science". ScienceWorld. http://www.scienceworld.ro/features/mad-about-science-interview-with-elise-andrew-creator-of-i-fucking-love-science-12417.html.
- Wild, Alex (April 23, 2013). "Facebook’s “I F*cking Love Science” does not f*cking love artists". Scientific American Blogs. http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/compound-eye/2013/04/23/facebooks-i-fcking-love-science-does-not-fcking-love-artists/.
- "Why Is a Woman Who Loves Science So Surprising?". National Geographic. MARCH 25, 2013. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2013/03/130325-elise-andrew-i-fking-love-science-women/.
- "Elise Andrew on science and sexism: ‘Is this really 2013?’". Maclean's. March 27, 2013. http://www.macleans.ca/general/elise-andrew-on-science-and-sexism-is-this-really-2013/.