The woke movement knows no boundaries - just ask marine experts and advocates and Australia who are dedicating their time, energy and resources to getting violent shark attacks rebranded as "shark interactions".
The movement says that using the word “attack” contributes to sharks being "unfairly stigmatized as a deliberate killer," according to the NY Post.
If people don't want to use the word "interactions", the group suggests alternatives like “negative encounter,” “incident” or simply “bites”.
University of Sydney language researcher Christopher Pepin-Neff argued: "Shark attack’ is a lie,” stating that "a majority of what people call 'attacks' are merely nips and minor injuries from smaller sharks."
Pepin-Neff argued that the "attacks" used to be called “shark accidents" before the term "attack" was dubbed in the 1930's.
And the Department of Primary Industries in New South Wales has already started to (we swear we are not making this up) work with "a shark-survivors support group, Bite Club, to identify more sensitive vocabulary to describe an audience with a shark."
A spokeswoman for the group said: “NSW DPI is respectful that each incident is best described by the individual involved. DPI generally refers to ‘incidents’ or ‘interactions’ in our formal shark reporting.”
Leonardo Guida, shark researcher at the Australian Marine Conservation Society, said the language change "helps dispel inherent assumptions that sharks are ravenous, mindless man-eating monsters.” Using different vocabulary “helps improve the public’s understanding of sharks and how they behave,” he continued, as if the general public is truly interested in getting close to "understanding" sharks or getting close to them.
Queensland’s Department of Agriculture told the Sydney Morning Herald that there has “been no formal direction in this space” and that “some people may just have a personal preference for the language they use.”
Nathan Hart, an associate professor at Macquarie University, concluded: “Sharks don’t have hands, so if they want to explore something, they mouth it. Very rarely are humans consumed by sharks.”
Well that makes us feel better. Meanwhile, stay tuned on what is going to be our next obvious coverage of this story: advocates fighting for sharks to be called by whatever pronouns they prefer.