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Who's Influencing the Shark Conversation Online?

Kieran Mulvaney's picture
on August 6, 2012 - 4:28pm

We're just days away from Shark Week - the annual catalyst of by far the single biggest surge in cartilaginous conversation online. In recognition thereof, and in to complement our Sharkinars, we compiled a list of some of the most effective and influential drivers of social media shark discussions. Read on to learn more about our picks.

Subscribe to Upwell's "Shark Influencers" list on Twitter to keep tabs on these influencers from the comfort of your own Twitter feed.

Alisa Schwartz

Followers: 3,991
Klout Score: 66
Twitter Bio: Scuba diver & outspoken marine conservationist w/focus on sharks. No Blue = No Green. Total Ocean Devotion here! Follow @sharkangels too! #savesharks

Alisa is one of the most engaged individuals posting online about shark conservation, tweeting many times daily, including mutiple article and news links.

David Shiffman

Followers: 6,722
Klout Score: 54
Twitter Bio: I am a shark conservation biologist and blogger. I support science-based management, sustainable fishing, and do not support direct action.

David is one of the most active of shark experts in social media, frequently engaging his followers in conversations on science and policy and compiling some of those discussions in Storify form. he is also a frequent blogger at Southern Fried Science.

Dr. Alistair Dove

Followers: 1,368
Klout Score: 51
Twitter Bio: Director of Research/Conservation at Georgia Aquarium. Blogger at DeepSeaNews. In love with the diversity of life in the oceans. Views my own.
Website: ·

A marine biologist and parasitologist who has studied many aspects of aquatic animal health, Alistair now specializes in the biology of whale sharks.

Chuck Bangley

Followers: 366
Klout Score: 48
Twitter Bio: Grad student and wanna-be shark expert.

A specialist in the interactions between marine apex predators and fisheries, Chuck provides a good description of his work and the importance of outreach through social media in this interview with Bora Zivkovic following the ScienceOnline 2012 conference earlier this year.

Rob Stewart

Followers: 5,777
Klout Score: 44
Twitter Bio: Biologist, shark lover, photography and documentary filmmaker. Creator of Sharkwater, founder of non profit @uc_revolution working on second movie, Revolution

Rob boasts a wide presence online, not just through his own Twitter handle but also that of @uc_revolution (the website of which is, an organization that among other things campaigns against shark finning. His documentary, Sharkwater, received numerous awards. Also involved in Shark Angels (see below).

Neil Hammerschlag

Followers: 449
Klout Score: 40
Twitter Bio: Professor at University of Miami; Sharks Oceans Research; Education & Conservation. Views my own.

Conducts research on many aspects of shark and shark conservation; publishes with great frequency in the scientific literature but also has become a real 'go-to' scientist on sharks, shark behavior and shark conservation for print and broadcast media.

Project AWARE

Followers: 8,930
Klout Score: 49
Twitter Bio: Protecting Our Ocean Planet - One Dive at a Time

Engages scuba divers across the world to become involved in two principal project areas: marine debris, and protection for manta rays and sharks.

Shark Truth

Followers: 2,150
Klout Score: 43
Twitter Bio: A grassroots nonprofit dedicated to promoting awareness & action for sharks (sans #sharkfin). Home of HappyHeartsLoveSharks Tweeters @claudiali @ei_van

Founded by Chinese Canadian activist Claudia Li, Shark truth focuses on the Chinese-Canadian community, using social media and other grassroots efforts to bring about an end to the use of shark fin soup in wedding ceremonies and elsewhere.

Shark Defenders

Followers: 2,182
Klout Score: 48
Twitter Bio: Shark Defenders is dedicated to creating shark sanctuaries and supporting the proper management of shark and ray species worldwide. #FinSanity

Shark Week

Followers: 70,041
Klout Score: 65
Twitter Bio: Jawsome. Coming to you August 12th.

Of course, we have to include Shark Week itself, which is promoted widely across social media platforms, including Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr, as well as Discovery's own dedicated sites.

Not Enough Shark for You?

Outside of our top ten, of course, are multiple other individuals and organizations tweeting and engaging online wholly or partly on matters shark-related.

Shark Savers (Sam Whitcraft)

Followers: 1,273
Klout Score: 66
Twitter Bio: Conservation Biologist

Captain Chris Wade

Followers: 605
Klout Score: 63
Twitter Bio: Jump aboard, mateys, and follow the Captain and crew's adventures on the R/V Sea Watch - the Shark Boat! Lets save the sharks!

Pew Environment

Followers: 1,860
Klout Score: 54
Twitter Bio: We work globally to establish pragmatic, science-based policies that protect our oceans, preserve our wildlands, and promote the clean energy economy.

Shark Savers

Followers: 3,895
Klout Score: 42
Twitter Bio: We are raising awareness, educating people, bringing organizations together and empowering a grassroots effort to protect and sustain sharks on a global scale.

Founded in 2007 by a team of divers, Shark Savers is working as a conservation partner with Discovery Channel for Shark Week.

Stop Shark Finning

Followers: 5,923
Klout Score: 43
Twitter Bio: Shark fin soup could mean the end of sharks. Join me and stop shark finning.

Shark Angels

Followers: 2,454
Klout Score: 40
Twitter Bio: The Shark Angels are leading a grassroots movement to save sharks... and we need your help.


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