All of humanity made history today by landing a spacecraft on a comet.
Unfortunately, many of the women following that development — and a few men, too — were made to feel pretty unwelcome in the space exploration sphere when one of the people leading the mission decided to show up to talk about it wearing a shirt covered in dozens of half-naked women.
After Rosetta Project Scientist Matt Taylor wore the shirt while talking to reporters during a global livestream of the comet landing, people watching took to Twitter in frustration:
No RT @yannisp This is the scientific head of operations for the ESA’s rosetta project. Cool shirt for an engineer :) pic.twitter.com/DvlzxylBHR
— A Geek Mum (Shannon) (@ageekmom) November 12, 2014
Contrast the feeling you get seeing this guy in a shirt that objectifies women to this image from the Mars mission control room in India when that country launched its first orbiter to the Red Planet earlier this year.
Interestingly, Taylor recently participated in a live online chat with the Wall Street Journal in which he was asked how he gained acceptance in such a respected field while sporting sleeve-length tattoos.
He responded, “The people I work with don’t judge me by my looks but only by the work I have done and can do. Simple.”
If only women could hope to someday be judged that way too.