I remember the music, the mystery and excitement and then the surface of the water broke and I was forever changed for the better. God I hope you can love something so strongly one day. Every picture and video delights you, their graceful movements bring you to tears. You would do anything to help them thrive because Jfc they deserve it. I feel so blessed to love them.
Keiko, the orca who starred in Free Willy was released in the wild in July of 2002 after being in captivity for 23 years. A few weeks after his release, he showed up at a Norwegian fjord in hopes of seeking human contact and would even give children rides on his back.
‘I think people have a slight misunderstanding about what happened with Keiko. Keiko was never released into the wild. He was never taken out to, you know, an orca pod or a remote distance from where he had been held in the bay and left. THAT’S released into the wild. That’s 'goodbye Keiko, have a nice life’’
Keiko: the Untold Story
…and that’s not what people are campaigning for this time either. Out of the tanks does not mean abandoned to the sea
Okay, I found the first picture with text (I’ll refer to this as Pic 1), on a pro-cap Facebook site. I decided to put my two cents on it, and as I cannot comment on the side (they blocked me for being anti-cap, not because I was rude or argued with them, just because I stated I was anti; I might however disproven some of their posts), I decided to post it here. I googled around for the source of the picture (which I’ll talk about lower down), and found the second picture, which I’ll refer to as Pic 2. I also edited Pic 2 to show a thing, I’ll refer to the edited picture as Pic 3.
1. Okay, first off. The quality of these pictures are basically shit. Using our biases, we can actually get the picture to be Keiko if want it to be, or not Keiko if we don’t. The shit quality is actually both working for and against us, no matter which side we stay on. This is especally true for Pic 1′s top part. 2. Ever heard of water distorion? The water combined with the shit quality and angle of photograph in Pic 1 can cause the eye patch and saddle to appear diffrently. 3. I included Pic 2, so we can see the saddle patch and eye patch in a slightly different angle, as they’re taken just seconds apart. I have honestly nothing more to tell about this picture than… the quality is shit on this too. But this picture do show us how the water disorts the eye patch and how the dorsal is bent; apperently towards us when the whale is swimming towards the right. That solves it, right? It isn’t Keiko! 4. Wrong. While we cannot be 100% sure (DUE THE SHIT QUALITY AGAIN) that it is Keiko, let’s look at some things: the pictures can be flipped/mirrored. Not only would it explain the dorsal being flopped over in the wrong way, but also the lack of tracking device. Take a look on this picture:
Now image it being flipped/mirrored. It would probably look pretty much alike the other two pictures with the orca swimming among the others, depedning on how you see the dorsal in the first place, see Pic 3 on how you can see the dorsal’s placement. Now you’ll be thinking, “but if it’s a picture of Keiko, and it’s not mirrored, explain the dark patch on the saddle!” Honestly, I can’t. If the picture is a genuine, unedited picture I dunno what that might be. If it’s edited however, it could be an edited out tracking device like shown here:
Notice the yellow tracking device on the dorsal, and not on the side of the saddle patch? It’s the same here:
Of course, these two pictures might be before Keiko was fully released, and thus had another type of tracking device, or Pic 1 might show before his release. Without any real context, we have no idea. “But why would someone edit it in the first place?”, you think. Let’s say the picture is edited as in removing the tracking device. I guess that’s to show him in the wild, with no connection to humans at all. If we say it’s edited as in mirroring the picture, my best guess it’s because it’s from a movie (which would explain the shit quality). In movies it’s a common practice to mirror shots to get a more dynamic and powerful image, as for example here “Keiko is swimming out in the unknown, but met a pod of orcas”. In the west, we often see things like “going out on adventure” as going from left to the right; while “comming home” as going from the right to the left (compare the scene in the Lion King, when Simba returns home; he runs from the right to the left.) 5. Sources, people. Where do the picture on the top in Pic 1 come from in the first place, with the caption “Keiko swimming with wild orcas”? I did a reverse image search and I found it on Pintrest, but no other place. Which is the same with Pic 2, and the last two pictures in the text. (As a fun side fact, I also found a picture of Bingo with the tag and caption “Keiko, I love him”.)The middle pictures (the one with him jumping, and the one with the trackind device just underwater) are taken from orcahome.de, but also clearly show his marking so we know it’s him.
Summa summarum: The picture quality is shit and could easily be tampered with, this it could be Keiko or it couldn’t. My guess is that it’s mirrored, and thus the dorsal is flipped over to the kamera side, as shown as the right example on Pic 3.
Feel free to add your own opinion on this, I’d love to hear it :D