Have you met one of your unrelated identical twins?

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2020/12/08/have-you-met-one-of-your-unrelated-identical-twins.html


I met mine 20 years ago, we used to go to the same parties in Edinburgh, although I don’t expect we look the same anymore. He even confused my parents, who had gone there for the Edinburgh Festival.


“They’re going to battle it out to see how far their similarities go.”

:roll_eyes: Why does every otherwise-interesting cultural phenomenon have to be warped into a fucking reality competition? Maybe two people can make awesome cakes or swords or whatever?


Seems like an arbitrary estimate since even we identical twins don’t look exactly the same. So it’s always going to be a sliding scale for just how much any given person resembles you.


I work with an identical twin of another gal I’ve done consultant work with. Can confirm they don’t look enough alike that you would readily mistake one for the other.


I periodically get calls or texts from people saying they’ve seen me somewhere which I was nowhere near at the time. So this seems like a thing.


I apparently have a twin who I haven’t met, but I’ve been mistaken for him.

I was out in front of my home when a guy drove by, eyeballing me. I looked at him, wondering if I knew him (I didn’t) or if he was needing directions. He drove by, turned around and came back.
Him: “Hey, [indecipherable]. Hey, [indecipherable]!”
Me, confused: “I beg your pardon?”
Him, more clearly: “Hey, Snake, how’s it going?”
Me: “Uh, I think you have me confused with someone else.”
Him, clearly skeptical: “Huh… I guess you’re not him. You don’t have all his tattoos.”
Me, at the thought of looking like someone unironically known as “Snake”: “…”
Him, starting to drive off: “Yeah, you wouldn’t want to be Snake!”
Me, realizing I look enough like someone who’s probably a gang member and has people after him that idiots will confuse us: runs the fuck inside and stays there for the next couple of years.

Other than that, once in grad school I realized someone was confusing me with a classmate, who looks nothing like me, but we had the same haircut, more or less. Sometimes people talk about having “one of those faces” that are easily mistaken. Apparently I had “one of those haircuts.”


There’s a time axis that has to be included as well. Because these doppelgängers are not born together, they are all different ages, and only look alike for a few-year overlap in the middle of their lives, I imagine. You can see it with Chad Smith and Will Ferrel, for example. Will is a fair bit older, and age is making them look less alike every year.


Or maybe …


I almost got my brother in trouble once when his boss saw me somewhere else while he was supposed to be at work. Then when the guy got back to the office he was like ”how did you get back here so fast?”

And then there was the time at his wedding when one of his bride’s guests saw me smooching my own wife.


Now I can finally breathe life into all those lost souls on thispersondoesnotexist.com


This girl I didn’t even know in High School angrily confronted me when a friend of mine showed her photos from the prom and convinced her that I secretly managed to go to the prom with two dates, switching off throughout the night without either one knowing about the other like some kind of wacky sitcom situation.


I’m a round beardy white dude. I think I’ve got a few more than 7 people I could be mistaken for, or vice versa.


Just tried the site. I wear glasses and it pretty much just matched me with any guy with glasses.

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The American at the end - “the court of popular opinion said that we were the most identical, so screw science - that’s all that matters, is peoples’ opinions”.

I’m shocked!

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Apparently I’m the doppelgänger for my kids’ high school French teacher. Honestly the only thing I can see that we have in common is that we’re both middle aged dudes with glasses. But I guess I’m wrong about that because I constantly get mistaken for him. I’m just going to give in and say “Yes, I am. Bonjour!”


It’s hard to believe that a scientist would actually go along with what was presumably the TV network’s idea to turn it into a competition. You have a bunch of different measures for similarity, each with an essentially meaningless score attached to them, because similarity in each of those areas individually can already be measured in a bunch of different ways. And then you combine those measures of similarity, in what is a doubly meaningless way to see who is the grand champion of similarity across different dimensions. I bet you could come up with sensible metrics for the measures and sensible ways of combine them that would have resulted in any of the pairs being crowned the “winner”, whichever one you wanted to win. And what a weird notion of “winning” in the first place!

I continue to be stunned and surprised how many people are willing to send their most personal information to be harvested by who knows who.
Here a user along with over 7 million other users (their number, not mine) are willingly surrendering a photo your actual face, matched with email info, gender identification, and who knows what else.

From their faq:
You can upload 5 photographs into your gallery, however your first image only is used for AI comparison.

Oh? I wonder what they will be doing with the other photos voluntarily sent but not used.

Here’s the rest

Some of this sounds like the instructions one gets at a police booking.


i thought this was a pretty amazing little documentary. it’s interesting that apparently we (as people) all zoom in on the same sorts of things for our mental shorthand, so saying someone “looks exactly like” someone else is pretty subjective. that being said, there really were three pairs in this that really DID look like twins to me. the others i could see were close, but not quite