I read at one point that one is a fan of TOS while the other is a fan of TNG. This may be a matter of opinion but I'm wondering what the consensus is, if any?


5 Answers 5


Trekkies is what Star Trek fans called themselves. The outside world only saw the most fanatical and unhinged, so that is the image that they had for Trekkies and used it to refer to all Star Trek fans.

Trekkers is a term coined by those who take themselves and what others think of them far too seriously. The did it to distance themselves from that image.

I was there for the whole, "I'm not a Trekkie, I'm a Trekker" movement. So, I know who they are. Most of them are, in fact, Trekkies. I've been using this username long enough that they know who I am. I wonder if any of them are here....

There are many Star Trek fans who just don't give a hoot about what you call us.

As a member of the former STAI (Star Trek Association of Irvine) which was started on the 10 year anniversary of the cancellation of TOS. I was there for most of it.

BTW, @KyleJones, Shatner caught a lot of blow back for that statement. It really limited his popularity at cons for a while regardless of how true that whole skit was (I've met almost everyone that was portrayed in that audience). It was worse than Nimoy's I am Not Spock book; mostly because Nimoy really didn't care.

EDIT: I just found a page that links to RAPA our (STAI's) old monthly newsletter. I didn't know those still existed.

  • And he still acts very condescending towards his fans... I saw him at ComicCon a few years ago at a Q&A panel.
    – Godryc
    Commented Sep 23, 2017 at 0:35
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    @Godryc To be fair, he acts condescending toward everyone. I'm not saying that he's the greatest person in the world but, in the end, he's just an actor who was reading a script and doing what the director told him to do. He was there for a groundbreaking show but that makes him neither a hero or a villain.
    – ShadoCat
    Commented Sep 23, 2017 at 0:40
  • Sure. I wasn't attempting to make Shatner look bad, it just struck me as awful how he treated his fans at this particular panel. You are absolutely correct, he was merely an actor, neither hero nor villain. Just a man doing his job. I do respect him for actively carrying the Star Trek torch to this day.
    – Godryc
    Commented Sep 23, 2017 at 0:43
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    @Godryc, I've run SF cons and there are some people who are so tiresome that the actors get fed up all of it. How many times can they hear something like: "So what where you thinking when you said [something] from line 21 on page 42 after you exploded the [whatever]"?
    – ShadoCat
    Commented Sep 23, 2017 at 0:52
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    @Godryc, Galaxy Quest, aside from being awesome, is pretty spot on about many of the actors. With the exception of the Communications officer. Nicole was always very gracious.
    – ShadoCat
    Commented Sep 23, 2017 at 0:54

There isn't a consensus. It used to be that trekkies were the sort of people Shatner poked fun at in the infamous "Get a life!" Saturday Night Live sketch, and trekkers were the vast majority of the audience who enjoyed the programs but didn't make a fetish of them. Since then, various stars of the programs have weighed in, Star Trek fandom has vastly expanded and the situation has become hopelessly muddled.

  • The Wikipedia article you linked to has multiple quotes suggesting there is a big difference: one is a crazy fan and the other is a dignified, level-headed fan. Commented Sep 22, 2017 at 22:39
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    ... which I somewhat obliquely pointed out in my answer. I guess I should expand it a little bit for people who never saw the SNL sketch.
    – Kyle Jones
    Commented Sep 22, 2017 at 22:40
  • I added a link to a video of the sketch.
    – Kyle Jones
    Commented Sep 22, 2017 at 22:43
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    I thought trekkers was what Star Trek fans called themselves, and trekkies was a derisive term used by unsympathetic outsiders.
    – user14111
    Commented Sep 22, 2017 at 23:26
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    I may be younger than you but for almost my whole life we've worn the term Trekkie with pride. However I do recall some preferring trekker way back. Commented Sep 23, 2017 at 0:38

A (german) trekker told me about 30 years ago (i.e. when TNG was still new), that trekkie was a derisive nickname used by non-trekkers, while trekker was the name preferred and used by the trekkers.

The section "Trekkie vs. Trekker" in the Wikipedia article "Trekkie" tells the same story.

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    In a previous job I sat next to a guy who was some sort of officer in one of the Star Trek fandom groups. He wanted to be known as a "trekker", and was quite offended by the diminuitive "trekkie". Commented Sep 23, 2017 at 14:03
  • I recall the terms "trekkie" and "trekker" from before TNG; at the time, I came to know of "trekkie" as a derisive term, "trekker" as the term by which Star Trek fans preferred to be known.
    – Anthony X
    Commented Sep 23, 2017 at 17:26

Back in the 60s and 70s, we were Trekkies. Trekkies were passionate and goofy. We didn't take ourselves all that seriously, but any time networks tried to take Trek off the air (including syndication) we mobilized and wrote letters to keep it on. Perhaps there was always a self-important segment of Trek fans, but they became more prominent in the 80s and beyond. They wanted to disassociate themselves from those weird Trekkies, so they adopted the moniker "Trekkers" and ret-conned all sorts of explanations for the distinction. However, what was born out of disdain was passed on to fans who weren't even born when the division arose. Thus, later "Trekkers" probably aren't motivated by snob-appeal--it's just the term they heard when they came into the fandom.

  • This seems pretty offensive to those who consider themselves "trekkers". And also without any kind of evidence
    – Valorum
    Commented Nov 18, 2017 at 10:30

A trekkie is someone that seriously considers themselves to be a part of Starfleet/the Klingon Defense Force/Romulan Empire/whatever.

A trekker realizes that it is just a TV show that they enjoy. The Trekker won't be willing to sacrifice their real-life for the TV show. The Trekkie will.

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    Note that the question wasn't asking for individual opinions, but what the consensus is, if any. Could you edit this answer to demonstrate that this take is reflective of the consensus? Commented May 27, 2022 at 22:15
  • If this is the consensus, I do not consent :-). Always was a Trekkie. Always realized that this is just a TV show that I enjoy(ed). Would never have sacrificed my real life for the TV show, unless you include watching it in syndication from 12-1 AM and perhaps therefore sleeping less (or maybe not; I was in high school and doing my homework at the time).
    – Basya
    Commented May 29, 2022 at 13:16
  • Or should I say, "I do not consense" :-)
    – Basya
    Commented May 29, 2022 at 13:39

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