To name its latest, most technologically advanced polar research vessel, Britain's Natural Environment Research Council (un)wisely turned to the internet for suggestions. After many weeks of spirited voting, the internet has spoken. Everyone please raise a glass and prepare to break a bottle of champagne against the hull of the RRS Boaty McBoatface!
Alas, such a beautiful name is likely not to be — even though McBoatface received 124,000 votes from around the world, three times more than its nearest competitor.
While NERC has a sense of humor, officials there have said all along that the name of the vessel should reflect its serious mission.
"It's going to be doing science on some of the most important issues facing humanity," U.K. Tory minister Jo Johnson told BBC Radio 5 Live.
Johnson, who according to the Mirror, will have the final say on the decision, added that the ship's missions will center around global warming, climate change and rising sea levels. "So you want a name that fits the gravity and the importance of the subject," he said.
Former BBC radio host James Hand, the man who first suggested McBoatface, says he's apologized to the officials behind the poll.
My apology for #BoatyMcBoatface was in the most British sense. I stand by it being a brilliant name.— James Hand (@JamesHand) March 21, 2016
As for the other winning entries they include the RRS Poppy-Mai (34,371 votes), RRS Henry Worsley (15,231 votes), RRS It's bloody cold here (10,679 votes) and the RRS David Attenborough (10,284 votes.)
In a statement to the Telegraph, Johnson said that he will review all entries with NERC and come to a decision in due course.