Space the Final Frontier

‘Vulcan’ Voted Most Popular Name for Pluto’s Moons After a Twitter Campaign By Captain Kirk

Naturally.
But seriously that episode where Kirk and Spock fight on Vulcan is pretty good. (Photo: ussawesome.tumblr.com)

But seriously that episode where Kirk and Spock fight on Vulcan is pretty good. (Photo: ussawesome.tumblr.com)

A couple of weeks ago, the SETI Institute asked the Internet to help name two tiny moons of Pluto. Well, the voting has now closed, and while no one hijacked the polls in favor of “Alderaan,” it was a name near and dear to science fiction nerds that took the top spot: Vulcan (a write-in) pulled 174,062 votes out of 450,324 total.

Cerebus came in second with 99,432 and Styx rounded out the top three with 87,858, presumably all of them classic rock fans. The SETI Institute says it’ll be another month or two before the names are finalized.

But it’s not simply a reflection of Internet culture that the Trekkie option won out. In fact, as the Christian Science Monitor reports, it was the result of a sustained campaign by someone with influence and a lot of time on his hands. Vulcan was suggested and promoted by none other than William Shatner, a.k.a. James Tiberius Kirk, who spent the last week tweeting out regular appeals to his 1.35 million followers.

This despite the fact that Vulcan was the god of fire and had very little to do with the underworld, and Persephone would have been a far more thematically appropriate selection.

This concludes the latest update in our ongoing series, “What Is William Shatner Doing Now Instead of Appearing in the Relaunched Star Trek?”

Follow Kelly Faircloth on Twitter or via RSS. kfaircloth@observer.com