The trophies from the big award shows all have cute little names (Oscar), and the Emmys ceremony is getting all the attention. Emmy must be very excited, right? Some Emily who was so important to the TV industry that an honor was named after her? Nope. Emmy isn’t human, is a feminization, and is totally obsolete.
The television industry created the Emmy Awards for PR (publicity) in the late 1940s (the first awards were presented in 1949.) Emmy began as “Immy,” a nickname that broadcast workers used for the image orthicon tube.
Here’s the non-technical explanation: TVs used to use tubes for producing the image. Hence the slang term boob tube. The image orthicon tube was an important part of how TVs worked.
The Emmy trophy designers created an image of a winged woman holding a ridiculously large atom, so Emmy organizers feminized Immy to Emmy, to match the statue and perhaps personify it.
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