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So... the ugly male guppies don't know they are ugly? I mean, if guppies only want to hang out with uglier fish, wouldn't more attractive fish constantly be chasing less attractive fish who would not want to hang out with them because they are more attractive? Or, is this a kind of social commentary, where like people do in real life, the researchers are really only paying attention to what the attractive are doing. Maybe more research is called for. You know what, never mind.
The research demonstrates that bright guppies like to hang out with drab guppies. It doesn't address what drab guppies desire. However, I would speculate that it's a net benefit for the drab guppies since the bright guppy will draw in the females, giving the drab guppies exposure to the opposite sex they wouldn't have gotten otherwise. Tell me you haven't seen that dynamic at work in a bar!
If you go to a bar with Bean and/or Clooney and the ladies recognize both Bean and Clooney as movie stars they will think you must be important if you are associates of Bean and Clooney and you now have a shot with a hot mate that you would not have on your own. That is how it can work, hot by association which is a different result than learned in the fish experiment assuming a adequate significant amount of hot mates in the bar.
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