Boaty McBoatface Wins Ice Ship Name Poll

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Written By Mostafa Moradi

Boaty McBoatface romped home as the winner for suggestions for naming the new British £200 million polar research ship.

The Natural Environment Research Council put out a request on social media for help in naming the scientific research vessel and has been left in a quandary after Boaty McBoatface snatched 125,000 votes – nearly 80% of all the votes cast.

The NERC now has to decide whether to go with the public vote and formally name the ship Boaty McBoatface or to ignore the poll.

“We are going to think about all the suggested names and will announce a decision what to call the ship in due course,” said a NERC spokesman.

More than 7,000 suggestions were offered by the public, including Onion Knight, I Like Big Boats and I Cannot Lie, and Capt’n Birdseye Get Off My Cod.

How the voting unravelled

The five top polling names were:

  • Boaty McBoatface – 124,109 votes
  • Poppy-Mai – 34,371
  • Henry Worsley – 15,231
  • It’s Bloody Cold Here – 10,679
  • David Attenborough – 10,284

Poppy Mai is a toddler with incurable cancer from Norfolk, England.

Henry Worsley was a British explorer who died in January 2016 while attempting the first solo crossing of the Antarctic on foot and without a support team, while David Attenborough is a popular TV naturalist in the UK.

The Boaty McBoatface saga is not the first time a public naming vote has gone wrong for the organisers.

Remember Mr Splashy Pants?

In 2007, Greenpeace tagged a humpback whale in the Pacific Ocean and appealed to the public for a name – and Mr Splashy Pants won with the support of 120,000 people and 78% of the votes cast.

Mr Splashy Pants is currently under satellite surveillance to track his trail across the oceans as part of a campaign against whale hunting by Japanese ships.

Other disappointments for enthusiastic organisers include The Fred Durst Society of the Humanities and Arts, which won the poll for naming the city’s solid waste services department in Austin, Texas.

Fred Durst is the lead singer of US rock band Limp Bizkit, which sold millions of records worldwide.

Mountain Dew’s apple-flavoured drink branding contest which saw the name ‘Hitler Did Nothing Wrong’ win after a social networking site bombarded the online poll.