I’ve run into several headlines on the dubya dubya dubya suggesting, if not downright proclaiming, that Bill Nye and Neil deGrasse Tyson are in a full-blown Twitter war. Since I’m a big fan of both and first encountered these affable science dudes on PBS programs (Bill Nye the Science Guy and NOVA, respectively), I looked into it and discovered all the hype is just that.
Here’s the exchange:
Neil deGrasse Tyson
@neiltyson Meteors meet fiery deaths as they plunge through Earth’s atmosphere. So the term “Meteoric Rise” makes no sense whatsoever.
@BillNye Meteors create streaks in skies. From the ground, meteors often look like they’re leaving Earth. “Makes no sense” bit of an exag.
Now, who looks at this and screams, “Fight! Fight! Fight!” I have to ask. Sadly, lots of desperate people. But wishing don’t make horses and an Internet dispute as polite as this and conducted between two such intelligent, literate foes is as far from a Twitter War as it gets.
Nevertheless, it’s fun to consider what an all-out trash-talking fracas between these geek icons would sound like, perhaps with droll barbs along the lines of Shut your piehole, ya bow tie wearing buffoon! or Why don’t you go demote another planet, wisenheimer? But as we say in TV, save the drama for sweeps (no one really says that but I’m hoping it will catch on) and no amount of spin can make this into anything other than a blip on the Tweet-laden radar.
So, Tweet On, Neil and Nye, and let the haters hate. Those of us who know you from more enlightened sources understand your perspicacious intentions.