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Old September 7 2012, 09:13 AM   #4
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Re: What's the difference between a trekkie and a trekker?

Trekkie is "frequently depreciative" and is thus "not an acceptable term to serious fans", who prefer Trekker. The distinction existed as early as May 1970, when the editor of fanzine Deck 6 wrote:

...when I start acting like a bubble-headed trekkie, rather than a sober, dignified—albeit enthusiastic—trekker.

By 1976, media reports on Star Trek conventions acknowledged the two types of fans:

One Trekkie came by and felt compelled to explain, while paying for his Mr. Spock computer image, that he was actually a Trekker (a rational fan). Whereas, he said, a Trekkie worships anything connected with Star Trek and would sell his or her mother for a pair of Spock ears.

In the 1991 TV show Star Trek: 25th Anniversary Special, Leonard Nimoy attempted to settle the issue by stating that the term 'Trekker' is the preferred term; during an appearance on Saturday Night Live to promote the 2009 Star Trek film, Nimoy—seeking to assure Chris Pine and Zachary Quinto, the "new" Kirk and Spock, that most fans would embrace them—initially referred to "Trekkies" before correcting himself and saying "Trekkers", emphasizing the second syllable.

In the documentary Trekkies, Kate Mulgrew stated that Trekkers are the ones "walking with us" while the Trekkies are the ones content to simply sit and watch Star Trek. According to Patrick Stewart, the actors dislike being called Trekkies and are careful to distinguish between themselves and the Trekkie audience. He objected, however, when an interviewer described Trekkies as "weird", calling it a "silly thing to say". Stewart added, "How many do you know personally? You couldn't be more wrong."

The issue is also shown in the film Trekkies 2, in which a Star Trek fan recounts a supposed incident during a Star Trek convention where Gene Roddenberry used the term "trekkies" to describe fans of the show, only to be corrected by a fan that stood up and yelled "Trekkers!" Gene Roddenberry allegedly responded with "No, it's 'Trekkies.' I should know — I invented the thing."

Other fans have recounted a tale that the term trekkies was the original term that was adopted with the first Star Trek convention in 1972. However, by the second convention so many people had "jumped on the bandwagon" that the fans present at the second convention adopted the term "Trekkers" in order to distinguish themselves as the true fans, versus the fad fans who continued to use the term trekkies.
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