Most Shared

New evidence suggests the Brontosaurus could be real after all.

Everything you learned in second grade is wrong.

New evidence suggests the Brontosaurus could be real after all.

Remember that kid from second grade? You know, that kid?

(Who actually WEARS their science fair ribbon??)


The one you ran up to on the playground that one day and said, "HEY! CHECK OUT MY AWESOME NEW BRONTOSAURUS ACTION FIGURE!"


(It's REAL plastic!)

And he was like...

"You moron. There's no such thing as a Brontosaurus. It's a made-up dinosaur that only little kids think is real. That's actually an Apatosaurus."

And, if he was really super that kid-ish, he probably went on to explain that in the late 1800s, paleontologist Othniel Charles March brought back basically the same huge herbivore skeleton on two different expeditions out west and named it two different things. And since the Apatosaurus came first, that's the name that scientists ultimately agreed on in 1903.

And you were like, "Uh, duh, I knew THAT."

But deep down, you were devastated beyond human comprehension.

Because the Brontosaurus was your favorite dinosaur. But according to science, it never even existed.

(What is left to live for?)

After that, you made do the best you could. You grew up. Made friends. Fell in love. Lost love. Got a job. Got married. Applied for a mortgage. Life ... went on. But it was never really the same.

Until now.

Because — brace yourselves — some big news just dropped.

The Brontosaurus might be real after all!

Charles Choi, Scientific American:

Some of the largest animals to ever walk on Earth were the long-necked, long-tailed dinosaurs known as the sauropods—and the most famous of these giants is probably Brontosaurus, the "thunder lizard." Deeply rooted as this titan is in the popular imagination, however, for more than a century scientists thought it never existed...

Now a new study suggests resurrecting Brontosaurus. It turns out the original Apatosaurus and Brontosaurus fossils appear different enough to belong to separate groups after all. "Generally, Brontosaurus can be distinguished from Apatosaurus most easily by its neck, which is higher and less wide," says lead study author Emanuel Tschopp, a vertebrate paleontologist at the New University of Lisbon in Portugal. "So although both are very massive and robust animals, Apatosaurus is even more extreme than Brontosaurus."


Yep. That's right. Turns out a group of scientists now has cause to believe that the Brontosaurus is actually a distinct genus of dinosaur — similar to, but not completely the same as, you guessed it, the Apatosaurus.

(For maximum confusion, this is an Apatosaurus skeleton.)

And! There's enough evidence to suggest that there wasn't just one type of Brontosaurus, but three entirely separate species of them, known as Brontosaurus excelsus, B. parvus, and B. yahnahpin.

As with most scientific revelations, this probably won't completely end the controversy.

James Gorman, The New York Times:

"Dr. Tschopp and his colleagues Octávio Mateus at the New University and Roger B. J. Benson at the University of Oxford in England decided that although Brontosaurus and Apatosaurus are similar, there are actually two different genera and the Yale specimen is really a Brontosaurus after all. So are several other museum specimens, they said, including one at the University of Wyoming, and a baby Apatosaurus at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Pittsburgh.

Their paper, released online on Tuesday in the journal PeerJ, with all of its nearly 300 pages freely available to anyone, will not be the last word on whether the Brontosaurus name should come back into scientific use. Names of species and genera are matters of expert opinion. There is no national or international board of official dinosaur names that decides who is right."

But this news is still really freaking cool.

The bottom line of all this?

There's a lot about our own history and the history of our planet that we still don't know. There's still a lot to learn. Which is pretty incredible, when you think about it.


(Oooooooooh).

The even bottomer line?

Isn't it cool that scientists are always trying to prove themselves wrong? Like, for 100 years, scientists thought they were certain that the Brontosaurus and Apatosaurus were the same dinosaur. But still, a bunch of them were like, "Nope. Not good enough. Let's look into this again." Science is freaking fantastic.


The bottomest line?

Take that, that kid!

(And put away that smug little ribbon too.)

Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels
True

Increasingly customers are looking for more conscious shopping options. According to a Nielsen survey in 2018, nearly half (48%) of U.S. consumers say they would definitely or probably change their consumption habits to reduce their impact on the environment.

But while many consumers are interested in spending their money on products that are more sustainable, few actually follow through. An article in the 2019 issue of Harvard Business Review revealed that 65% of consumers said they want to buy purpose-driven brands that advocate sustainability, but only about 26% actually do so. It's unclear where this intention gap comes from, but thankfully it's getting more convenient to shop sustainably from many of the retailers you already support.

Amazon recently introduced Climate Pledge Friendly, "a new program to help make it easy for customers to discover and shop for more sustainable products." When you're browsing Amazon, a Climate Pledge Friendly label will appear on more than 45,000 products to signify they have one or more different sustainability certifications which "help preserve the natural world, reducing the carbon footprint of shipments to customers," according to the online retailer.

Amazon

In order to distinguish more sustainable products, the program partnered with a wide range of external certifications, including governmental agencies, non-profits, and independent laboratories, all of which have a focus on preserving the natural world.

Keep Reading Show less

Even as millions of Americans celebrated the inauguration of President Joe Biden this week, the nation also mourned the fact that, for the first time in modern history, the United States did not have a peaceful transition of power.

With the violent attack on the U.S. Capitol on January 6, when pro-Trump insurrectionists attempted to stop the constitutional process of counting electoral votes and where terrorists threatened to kill lawmakers and the vice president for not keeping Trump in power, our long and proud tradition was broken. And although presidential power was ultimately transferred without incident on January 20, the presence of 20,000 National Guard troops around the Capitol reminded us of the threat that still lingers.

First Lady Jill Biden showed up today with cookies in hand for a group of National Guard troops at the Capitol to thank them for keeping her family safe. The homemade chocolate chip cookies were a small token of appreciation, but one that came from the heart of a mother whose son had served as well.

Keep Reading Show less
True

If the past year has taught us nothing else, it's that sending love out into the world through selfless acts of kindness can have a positive ripple effect on people and communities. People all over the United States seemed to have gotten the message — 71% of those surveyed by the World Giving Index helped a stranger in need in 2020. A nonprofit survey found 90% helped others by running errands, calling, texting and sending care packages. Many people needed a boost last year in one way or another and obliging good neighbors heeded the call over and over again — and continue to make a positive impact through their actions in this new year.

Upworthy and P&G Good Everyday wanted to help keep kindness going strong, so they partnered up to create the Lead with Love Fund. The fund awards do-gooders in communities around the country with grants to help them continue on with their unique missions. Hundreds of nominations came pouring in and five winners were selected based on three criteria: the impact of action, uniqueness, and "Upworthy-ness" of their story.

Here's a look at the five winners:

Edith Ornelas, co-creator of Mariposas Collective in Memphis, Tenn.

Edith Ornelas has a deep-rooted connection to the asylum-seeking immigrant families she brings food and supplies to families in Memphis, Tenn. She was born in Jalisco, Mexico, and immigrated to the United States when she was 7 years old with her parents and sister. Edith grew up in Chicago, then moved to Memphis in 2016, where she quickly realized how few community programs existed for immigrants. Two years later, she helped create Mariposas Collective, which initially aimed to help families who had just been released from detention centers and were seeking asylum. The collective started out small but has since grown to approximately 400 volunteers.