On Stephen Colbert’s Orbital Victory

For the record, I love UK news sources. They’re not afraid to call a spade a spade.

As in this article, about NASA’s recent online voting to name a new component of the International Space Station.

“An American comedian has embarassed Nasa, the US space agency,” the article begins.

And that comedian is Stephen Colbert.

NASA had allowed the public to vote on the name for the station’s third “living room,” and one of the choices was Serenity, after Joss Whedon’s sci-fi spaceship.

But they also allowed write-in votes.

And into this breach stepped Stephen Colbert.

He campaigned to have the space station component named after him. And with his Comedy Central series, he had a visible and public platform to mount his campaign.

The comedian’s name beat the agency’s preferred choice by more than 40,000 votes in a total ballot of 1.2m. Other Nasa recommendations included Venture, Earthrise and Legacy, while Myyearbook and Socialvibe were among the public’s suggestions.

The world doesn’t need to worry about Colbert orbiting the Earth. NASA cautioned that they weren’t bound by the write-in results when the naming competition was announced. “John Yembrick, a Nasa spokesman, said his bosses would give the winning suggestion ‘the most consideration’ but reserved the right to give the new module an ‘appropriate’ name when it is launched aboard the space shuttle Endeavour next spring.”

I really do enjoy UK journalism. Just the subhead — “Nasa ballot leaves agency red-faced” — drips with scorn and mockery. :cheers:

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