Geek Trivia

What Iconic Award Was Almost Named The “Ike” Award?

The Emmy Award
The Nobel Prize
The Golden Globe Award
The Oscar Award
Uranus Was Almost Named What?
NASA Television's 2009 Emmy Award
NASA Television

Answer: The Emmy Award

It would be easy to think that the Emmy Award was named after a famous actress, the award creator’s daughter, or any other practical line of reasoning that involves the golden-winged award ending up with a feminine nickname.

The reality of how the Emmy ended up with such a name is a bit more winding, technical, and involves a stop at the nickname “Ike” first. When it came time for the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences to pick a name for their new award (and the associated ceremony), founder Syd Cassyd suggested “Ike,” a nickname for the television iconoscope tube. Given the popularity of “Ike” as a nickname for Dwight D. Eisenhower, however, the academy vetoed the suggestion. Television engineer and third academy president Harry Lubcke suggested “Immy,” a nickname for the image orthicon tube found in early television cameras. Immy stuck and was later feminized to “Emmy” to match the female form of the statuette.

Speaking of the statuette, the design of the Emmy Award is of a golden winged woman holding an atom, where the wings represent the muse of art and the atom represents the electron of science, and is intended to cover both the artistic and technical categories encompassed by the Emmy Award.