(Don't) Name a star

Two years ago I wrote about companies that let you name stars. It is one of the more popular posts on my blog with many finding it after searching for star naming online. Many of the comments I have received on that post are from people who have bought or have been bought 'star names'. They are generally of the view that 'it is only a bit of fun' and think I need to 'chill out'.

My comments on that post were really written from the frustration of having to deal with the fall-out of the star naming business. I get grieving people asking me about the star named after their relative. I try to be a gentle as possible with those people and encourage them to look at the night sky while trying to explain that it is really just a novelty item. People do not like to think that the deep and meaningful gift they've been bought (and they are meant in a deep and meaningful way by the purchaser) was a novelty item. I don't blame them. I hold the star naming companies responsible.

Stuart (no, not me) over at Cumbrian Sky has written an excellent post on star naming. He has had similar experiences to me and really does a good job of explaining why I find it so reprehensible. I encourage you to read the full article.

Tags: |
Posted in astro blog by Stuart on Friday 25th Apr 2008 (15:51 BST) | 77 Comments | Permalink

Comments: (Don't) Name a star

thanks for posting this

i was thinking of naming a star after brother who has just past away. for his daughter.

but the thought of her growing up only to realise its just a scam could of caused problems. to lose her daddy then her daddys star would of been terible

thankyou

damnedfairy

Posted by damned fairy on Friday 18th Jul 2008 (12:48 UTC)

Was going to name a star for my new born. I wondered how it worked, now I know. It doesnt. Thanks I would have felt a fool everytime i looked up at night!

Posted by charlken on Tuesday 25th Nov 2008 (21:36 UTC)

For the love of god get a grip. Its a nice way to have something a bit different and special. If people are really convinced a star is named they have bigger problems than just being upset when they find out it isnt.

Posted by Ashley on Tuesday 16th Dec 2008 (15:45 UTC)

I think its really sad, i recently lost my mum who i miss greatly, and for my dad iam having a star named after her, this will give him comfort im sure, and i dont care wether it is a scam as long as it helps, as the man said get a grip.

Posted by jayne ledsham on Friday 02nd Jan 2009 (16:41 UTC)

gravatarAshley and Jayne, thanks for reading the post and the context it was written in (i.e. the links). Having read those, you know that I am in no way belittling the meaning behind your gifts.

Posted by Stuart on Friday 02nd Jan 2009 (17:40 UTC)

gravatardoes it really matter if its not for real??, its all to do with the emotional side of things

iv just lost my brother and my children have been told that uncle kev is in the sky on a star, so to have kevs name on a star will be very special

Posted by paul on Saturday 03rd Jan 2009 (00:02 UTC)

gravatarPaul, you are correct that it doesn't matter for those that already have these gifts because it was a genuine emotion behind the purchase. This is true for you, Ashley and Jane. This page is certainly not here to belittle your gifts.

Perhaps my complaint is not clear. I get put in a position of either lying to the recently bereaved or upsetting them. Having had plenty experience of bereavement myself, and having seen relatives buy stars for others, I don't want to do either of those things. I dislike the star naming companies for putting me in the position of lying or upsetting people.

I do not understand why I am not allowed to be angry at these companies.

Posted by Stuart on Saturday 03rd Jan 2009 (02:25 UTC)

if people really believe they can name a star for real for 20 pounds then they are daft,

i guess if people pay hundreds of pounds for this then its a con and morraly awful

but the emotional well being it can bring is worth every penny

Posted by paul on Monday 05th Jan 2009 (23:52 UTC)

Surely, if people realise that you can't really name a star after them, their emotional well-being is not going to benefit from this gift is it? They'll just feel faintly embarrassed; I do. I've had two stars named after me by well meaning friends, and I can't bring myself to hang the certificate on the wall, it's too cringe-making. On the other hand, I don't want to break their hearts and tell them they were conned.

Look, send me £20 and I'll rename one of my neighbours for you. No-one else will know their new names, but I'll make a book and hide it in the local library. Then you can feel all mushy inside.

Posted by Matt Shewbridge on Sunday 08th Feb 2009 (22:18 UTC)

well my daughter may be getting adopted and really wanted to give her something special as friend told me about this i figured some think wasn't right at the low cost i also write fiction and it would been good to have a real star in my work these companies should be strait and up front did find one that said there it wasn't legal or recognized but others failed to do so this is morally wrong i would been up for naming a whole loads of stars my friend swore blind it was recognized officially as i found it hard to believe that astrologers would have to use these names peoples, i now feel i should tell my friend that all she has is a lovely looking gift, but i doubt i will as this probably upset her as her son is into astrology one day he will he will find out that his star is not real so as for getting a grip think of him as he really keen on astrology and has told all his friends

Posted by wraith night on Sunday 05th Apr 2009 (23:00 UTC)

Does anyone know the best site for naming a star, because im in the UK and theres quite a few, i guess that the star registry is the best one to go with? anyone?

Posted by JackPacman on Thursday 16th Apr 2009 (11:11 UTC)

I think that its good to name a star in the sky for someone because it makes your loved ones that how much you care them. Here is a website"buyastarforsomeone(dot)com", which would realize you the importance of this gift.

Posted by Danny on Wednesday 22nd Apr 2009 (16:55 UTC)

I think that its good to name a star in the sky for someone because it makes your loved ones that how much you care them. Here is a website(buyastarforsomeone.com), which would realize you the importance of this gift.

Posted by Danny on Wednesday 22nd Apr 2009 (16:56 UTC)

Here in Australia you can name a star via the Sydney Observatory and as they make clear, they are a non-profit organisation and the price you pay for the naming is fully tax deductible and goes toward the running of the Observatory. I would think gifts like this are more appropriate for children rather than adults for special events, eg, I was considering this for my godson-to-be, but the price is a bit prohibitive in the current economic climate, even when you know it's going to fund the Observatory and is tax deductible!

Posted by Mel C on Monday 27th Apr 2009 (22:20 UTC)

Pay for something, don't pay for something... it's your money. Express your love or feel duped... they're your emotions. Name a star, don't name a star... ultimately, it's up to you. However this debate will end, what you do is your business anyway. Happy star naming... or not. :)

Posted by anne on Tuesday 12th May 2009 (15:05 UTC)

This is the second most stupid thing I have seen within the last 2 weeks people being petty about people who find peace naming things and the colour of an animated character. I have to write a note on here because I feel very disappointed with people that can write such comments about naming stars, planets what ever is silly, WHY? Even if it is someone just making money out of it doesnâ™t mean you canâ™t believe whatâ™s not paid for isnâ™t yours so paid for something and it does. I personally believe that the whole naming a star is a great idea it does bring peace and an unbelievable feeling that only a person that wants to name a star or do something special for the reason that someone has past away or even giving to a loved one to show how much they care would understand. isnâ™t that what itâ™s all about anyway, to make someone else feel good, or even ones self? I think itâ™s a lovely thing to do. Having just found out that my husband has named a star with my pasted daughters name to give me for Christmas makes me feel warm inside, I didnâ™t get to see my baby not even a picture and dealing with day to day life knowing you have lost the most important part of your life and not having any evidence of this is very hard to continue, I shall look to the sky at night and look at the stars and know that my daughter is looking down on me. And to anyone else that has been disappointed with the selfless posts I wouldnâ™t pay any attention only you can decide whatâ™s best and I no that for me, having my baby live on in a star is better then not having her at all, And I can say I managed to do something nice for her that will last a life time and never be forgotten.

Posted by b on Friday 20th Nov 2009 (18:39 UTC)

gravatarDear b, I'm sorry that you misunderstood the sentiment here. My complaint is *not* about people like you or your husband who named a star in full knowledge of what you were doing. I have *no* problem with it meaning something to you.

My problem is that some people name a star without this knowledge and then feel tricked or cheated when they find out that anyone can sell 'their' star. I really don't like being put in the situation of doing that to people and I'm not sure why you think I should be happy being nasty to people.

Let me re-iterate, if you're fully aware of the facts and are happy to name a star (as you obviously are) then I really don't have a problem with that.

I hope that clarifies my feelings on this for you.

Posted by Stuart on Wednesday 25th Nov 2009 (20:40 UTC)

If the gift site deliberately deceives customers into believing the star naming is official rather than a novelty then it's a con. Many do by claiming that it's copyrighted or registered with the British Library or similar, when in fact this is meaningless and certainly doesn't make it officially recognised.

The IAU could stamp out the practice entirely by offering the service themselves to raise money for serious research, but I doubt it'd cost ÃâšÃ‚£20! I'm amazed that anyone can seriously believe that they can physically buy or permanently name a star and receive a gift set for next to nothing?

Posted by Mark on Sunday 17th Jan 2010 (13:57 UTC)

Imagine the end of a mushy romantic film...the stars twinkle in the night sky, and Ewan McGregor turns to Keira Knightley OR Dad turns to motherless children OR enter your scenario, and says..."See that bright star up there, that's the star we'll look at when we think of each other OR Mummy OR whoever. We'll call that star our forever star." Roll credits, orchetra, tears. But then Keira OR little Jimmy OR whoever turns back and says "Which one? Do you men that little..no, to the left, right you see those three clumped together, just below and right a bit..." I know, let's get a star chart printed so we know exactly where our star is....there's a company on the internet...

I do agree with the blogger, the names of these companies and their presentation seem designed to imply some official authority and they are not keen to point out that this is a novelty product. People are daft enough to think that it's legitimate and they should know what they're buying. That said, if it is bought as a romantic gesture or a token of remembrance then it is - always - the thought that counts!

Posted by clare on Friday 16th Apr 2010 (13:22 UTC)

after reading all the posts yes its alittle upseting that its not real, a scam.. but on the other hand to recive a gift thats completely diffenent and thoughtful is worth more than the money it was paid for. if people love the idea, concept, thoughtfulness then thats good for me, so you pay £20, but in return its worth is alot more to the ones that loved it...

Posted by ian on Friday 14th May 2010 (11:58 UTC)

really, what is the big deal?

i got a gift of 'name a star' for my boyfriend. we got a cute certificate, and its personal for us because we adore stargazing. the truth is, there ARE billions and billions of unnamed stars - given a code number everytime a new one is discovered. i have always been fasinated in astronomy, and to know that my boyfriend and i have our own star is more important to me than the fact that a NASA scientist is going to recognise the star as ours. a certificate is just a certificate, and a number is just a number, but if you want something meaningful and everlasting i think this gift is great.

Posted by alice on Monday 20th Sep 2010 (18:30 UTC)

gravatarAlice, thanks for the comments. The big deal is the bad part of the star naming business that astronomers (people who have no connection with the star naming companies) have to cope with. The bad part is when people, unlike you, believe that "their" star is uniquely named for them or their deceased loved one. In cases like yours, where people know that the same star may be named by countless other companies, there is no big deal.

Posted by Stuart on Monday 20th Sep 2010 (18:42 UTC)

stuart, I empathise -not a nice situation to be in. Anyone ranting against you clearly hasn't read you comments properly.

Posted by fred on Thursday 14th Oct 2010 (16:39 UTC)

At the end of the day if these people want to believe that the star is ACTUALLY named after them or a loved one who is it hurting? The answer is no one. These gifts give comfort to so many people and no one should be bursting there bubble. I myself am naming 2 stars at Christmas, 1 for my daughter who will be 22 months old and 1 for my son aged 8 and the smile on my sons face when he gets it will be well worth the £29.99 each I paid for them. At the end of the day people should be left to do what they want to do. None of these companies are claiming this is a official name change so who is it really hurting?

Posted by Hayley Crossalnd on Tuesday 26th Oct 2010 (14:24 UTC)

Good lord people...your the ones who need to get a grip. all the blogger is saying is that the star is not officially being named. Companies are charging hundreds of dollars just to send you some pretty little pieces of paper that say your name and a picture of some random star. there is NOTHING official about what they are doing. they are ripping you off. If you get some kind of deeper meaning from it then good for you....Im happy that you like it. But the fact of the matter is that the star is not REALLY being named after you or anyone.

Posted by Austin on Wednesday 08th Dec 2010 (08:37 UTC)

I just bought one for my daughters 1st christmas is was ten pounds its just a sweet thoughtful gift a keepsake its not to be taken seriously and to be fair its not really a scam you get to name the star and keep the certifcate, i could understand if people have spent hundreds of pounds on them, but i personally think its a lovely gift, show someone you care rather than buying them socks and smellys,personally i think it wouldbe near impossible to sit there going ( oh look thats star dave and thats star lola)

Posted by jade on Wednesday 08th Dec 2010 (14:14 UTC)

I think these gifts are fantastic for children or small and sweet gifts for anybody. I don't think they're fine for things such as memorial things and I believe this is where a lot of people are angry at such, people pay for them and are mislead into thinking that just one person has been named upon that star... It's an over whelming emotion I guess.. So when mislead it's kind of heartbreaking, when things such as planting a tree with a memorial plate, or a bench as such and so on.. would be a lot more worth it.. I was gifted one of these by my Aunt a few years back as a christmas present, it's a lovely thing to have, and a lovely present to give.. I was thinking about it for valentines actually, as a little sum'in sum'in. ˆˆ. I don't understand why people are getting so defensive over this. It's informative.

Posted by Natalie on Wednesday 02nd Feb 2011 (06:16 UTC)

i am considering naming stars against my family that we lost , my son, so far, but how serious is this for us, i barely have money for such things....................

Posted by Tracy on Thursday 03rd Feb 2011 (02:12 UTC)

gravatar"Naming a star" in this way is definitely not everlasting.

If the people buying it know it is a novelty gift, I'm not convinced it shows they care any more than if they bought a "world's greatest uncle" certificate. If it is considered a meaningful, heartfelt gift, why not just make your own certificate and pick your own star to name? That involves your own effort, is cheaper and you can pick any star you like. To me, that would be much more meaningful.

Buying a gift isn't always the answer. If want to show a grieving person that you care you could just be there for them. A friend at a time of loss can be the best, and longest lasting, gift.

Posted by Stuart on Thursday 03rd Feb 2011 (09:25 UTC)

Lol, nice thought

but none of your loved ones are living on in stars.

deal with it; let them go- its almost like mocking them.

Posted by Emily on Sunday 13th Feb 2011 (13:34 UTC)

it is a cute idea if its for fun though <3

Posted by Emily on Sunday 13th Feb 2011 (13:36 UTC)

Ashley and Paul - To call someone dumb because they thought it was a real star is really low of you. Seriously what have you contributed to the world that allows you to say someone is less of a person? And if you're so bright where's your award for curing a disease or inventing time travel? Please tell us what it is that makes you better and wiser? What have you contributed to society that gives you the right to stand above others and cast shameful judgement?

B, alice, Hayley Crossalnd - Why bother paying to name a star then? Just name one and let it be done with, right? If you don't care of the authenticity anyway then why give your cash to a scammer? And if you're itching to spend the cash then why not make a donation to a real cause in need in your loved one's name rather than spending money on a scammer who contributes nothing? I mean if we're talking about meaningful things and all ...

Posted by TodbollMcQuimbyFace on Monday 14th Feb 2011 (09:23 UTC)

I can't see how anyone could help but be angry and frustrated by this 'novelty' scam!

I agree, it's an insult (besides taking advantage) to many bereaved people out there, and just adds salt to the wound should they ever discover the truth. Imagine how guilty these people would feel: as if they'd just insulted their loved one's memory, when really, all they did was a beautiful and heartfelt gesture.

Now the thought of some company making a profit from people's grief and misplaced trust makes me feel quite sick!

I'm not what I would consider to be a naive person: but I was taken in by this, thinking that there are infinite numbers of stars out there, and somewhere in the distant cosmos would be a previously unknown star named in honour...

Sick, is what I say: Simply sick! Feeding off vulnerable, trusting people.

Thank you for posting this and warning us all to save us from further disappointment and heartache.

Posted by Kerry on Tuesday 08th Mar 2011 (03:18 UTC)

Thank you guys for the insight,I honestly thought that naming a star means,its yours whenever anyone goes on the star registy they will find your name on it.Didnt realise there were so many star naming sites...which also make you wonder about how legit the whole thing is.

Posted by Asiphe on Friday 18th Mar 2011 (10:56 UTC)

www . starregistry co uk is a rip off do not buy any star names whatsoever they are evil moneygrabbers

Posted by shaz on Monday 21st Mar 2011 (05:36 UTC)

www . starregistry co uk is a rip off do not buy any star names whatsoever they are evil moneygrabbers

Posted by shaz on Monday 21st Mar 2011 (05:36 UTC)

you gotta be seriously stupid to think your actually getting to name the actual star. its a great gift so leave it at that!!!

Posted by andy on Thursday 12th May 2011 (12:28 UTC)

I was thinking about naming a star in memory of my baby neice who died last year. I am glad I read this message board and will now find a more appropriate way to mark the anniverary of passing. I would rather give money to a charity than a money grabbing company. Thank you Paul

Posted by S-J on Saturday 14th May 2011 (19:41 UTC)

If there are so many stars out there

why is it not possible to pinpoint one area that the star stays in and give it a name.

Then when you look through the telescope you could actually find a star that relates to your certificate and co-ordinates?

People just want hope and lovefor others when they fall for this con

Someone make it real!!!!

Posted by m Collins on Tuesday 02nd Aug 2011 (22:21 UTC)

Dude, your spam filter wont let me post my message!

Posted by Joshua Eaton on Saturday 03rd Sep 2011 (10:00 UTC)

gravatar@Joshua, sorry. Did it contain lots of links or repeated words?

Posted by Stuart on Monday 05th Sep 2011 (14:32 UTC)

I give up. Have spent 20 minutes trying to post but can't get past the spam tester. Tried everything.

Posted by AR on Monday 03rd Oct 2011 (14:30 UTC)

It's the thought that counts. And the little money you pay is worth the beautiful certificate and card. It's not like they're charging hundreds of pounds is it? It's a reasonable amount.

People will argue about anything, taking the mystery out of life.

The tooth fairies aren't real either, nor is father christmas -but we don't have to spoil it for them, do we? (the children)

When someone dies, our understanding of this is very childish, as it's the great unknown, so we become as children, and we need security and comfort.

Naming a star is worth every penny, whether it's for real or not.

We need our childish dreams too -after all, we were children just a handful of years ago, so we should remember the wonderful magic of childhood!! Make-believe is important! That's what brings 'magic' into our lives surely!!

Posted by Jon Lester on Wednesday 26th Oct 2011 (17:51 UTC)

Yes, I know my £15 is money probably best spent on a sapling or rose bush, but I wanted to touch my partner's heart with a little something that he can turn to in a low moment as he continues to move on from his grieving. To look at the night sky and imagine that there is something tangible out there to turn to in a moment of crisis or need is what I am aiming for, not proof from NASA that the star actually exisits. We all need something to turn to from time to time and this gift is more about the thought of it than the actual. That's worth the £15 to me. It's in the giving and if it helps for even a short while I will be happy. For those who judge the 'scam' as such means they shouldn't consider such a gift for anyone. My gift is from my heart and I don't care what the reality is. I am an intelligent and sensible woman who knows this is more a sentiment than anything else, but I wanted to do this to show I care. And I will be buying a sapling in the spring too!

Posted by Julia S on Tuesday 06th Dec 2011 (10:51 UTC)

gravatarJulia, if it doesn't matter if the star even exists that doesn't sound like too genuine a message. Instead, you could make your own certificate and get him another gift with the £15 (like the sapling)? If you chose a star yourself - and you can pick one that you can find by eye instead of it being too faint to see in binoculars - you've then put more thought and effort into it. Isn't that more meaningful?

Posted by Stuart on Wednesday 07th Dec 2011 (09:55 UTC)

If naming a star brings great comfort to people who have lost some one special and they will feel better thinking that a star in the sky is there with a loved ones name on then why not just let them have there star and leave them alone.

I know someone who lost there grandchild when he was 3 months and her work bought her a star for him and she cherishes it and feels great love n warmth that her grandson has a star in the sky.

Santa isn't bloody real and we spend thousands buying gifts and telling our children that he is real and he's going to drop all the children in the worlds presents off in one night, to make them HAPPY AND JOYFUL so if a star does that for some one else they're not Dumb or anything else that people are calling them!! Have a heart for gods sake.

Posted by Dani on Tuesday 13th Dec 2011 (20:17 UTC)

gravatarDani, the people who buy them are not stupid so don't try to imply that is what I'm saying. I take it you didn't read why _I_ am upset by those companies that sell novelty items to grieving relatives without making it clear they are novelty items. Should I support it? Should I find it OK for people to make a profit from grief in that way?

Once again, I have no problem if people buy these things as novelty items.

Posted by Stuart on Wednesday 14th Dec 2011 (07:51 UTC)

It's not a scam because some of these sites have a disclaimer thaat the IAU only can name cellestial bodies -with official names-, but it's dangerously close as they charge money for something everyone can do, and not just faint stars but also on bright ones, and for free -of course, don't expect to be officially recognidez-.

Hell, I've been an amateur astronomer for years and in order to not to get lost on catalog numbers I've nicknamed not only stars but also other objects and especially entire galaxies.

Sorry for my English.

Posted by Voyager on Monday 19th Dec 2011 (15:34 UTC)

Are you looking for an extraordinary gift for your love ones? Well, allow me to recommend you to buy a star. I know youââ&ldquor;¢re saying right now that it is very impossible. But in reality buying a star is now available.

Just in case you really wanted to express all your love for your special someone buying a star tend to be a romantic and extraordinary surprise that you can give to him/her. Your partner will surely recognize you extremely like him/her and also it will show how important youââ&ldquor;¢re special one is to you. Whenever your lover look at the stars in the sky at night he/she will definitely recall your present and he/she will also remember and think of you as the star indicates your love for your partner.

Buying a star is not realistically buying it from the sky; the star will simply signifies your present for your special someone. There is a particular/a specific company who will be reliable in labeling a star. If you preferred to buy a star there are lots of agencies worldwide, this will help you in dedicating a star for your special someone like your family, friend, relatives and especially your loved one. Every company provides certificates for each star and shows your star location found on a star map.

So I assume buying a star is an effective gift that anyone will surely love.

FOR MORE INFORMATION CLICK ON THIS SITE http://buyingastar.net/ now!

Posted by jizelle on Tuesday 27th Dec 2011 (02:18 UTC)

gravatarJizelle, way to go on not reading the blog post or the ground rules.

Posted by Stuart on Tuesday 27th Dec 2011 (12:25 UTC)

A few years back my son almost died was in a intensive care for 4 weeks, my wife bought a star for our boy and until now I was under the impression it was real.... I feel sad to know it wasn't real, someone should sue these companys for fraud

Posted by khai mandranis on Saturday 11th Feb 2012 (14:39 UTC)

as the stars and universe were created billions of years ago, no one on this insignificant grain of sand that we call earth has any more authority to name or own a star than anyone else.even if some worldwide scientific organisation endorses the name of a star it means nothing in the bigger picture.the stars will still be here long after mankind has gone.i dont therefore see what difference it makes who names a star.if it gives joy or comfort to an individual then so be it.we're all just here for a blink of an eye anyway.

Posted by smiffy on Tuesday 21st Feb 2012 (21:57 UTC)

You know there are a couple of free star naming services out there, like www.staracle.com or sterntaufe.astronomie.at for German speaking folks. Those should be more popular because the symbolic act is the same except for it doesn't cost people anything ... and people know from the beginning it's only symbolic

Posted by Marc on Tuesday 28th Feb 2012 (21:41 UTC)

I have come across the perfect site @ www.starinspace.com

The IAU is the only place where you can officially name a star...

Star In Space says it how it is... It has it's own star field, different stars, upload messages & photos...

A thoughtful and fun gift for any occasion... And you can try it for FREE!

Posted by Chris on Friday 04th May 2012 (19:08 UTC)

I was looking online for a gift for my girlfriend and found out that stars are her favorite thing. So I remebered naming stars and came across this site.

Name is star really should be used for the romance. Even if its not real its a nice gift and last longer than dinner and flowers. With all the millions of stars, its a nice touch. I really thought about the purchase I made and thought hey this was one Hell of a hallmark moment.

Guess what the best gift was?

The build a bear cause we did it together, and the nameing of a star cause I knew she loved them.

Posted by richard j borczynski on Thursday 14th Jun 2012 (23:36 UTC)

Just pick one and make a certificate yourself haha cheap easy and you can swap if you want haha

Posted by kirsty on Saturday 23rd Jun 2012 (20:31 UTC)

One of the people who have posted on here mentioned the Sydney Observatory name a star I have just been on their website and you can name a star for 300 dollars I was considering this for my Grandchild who lives in Sydney for his Christening they say that you can also go to the Observatory and view the star how can a company like this make these claims if they are untrue or are they right in saying that your Star will be registered in their catalouge with the name you choose for it please enlighten me I know the IAU wont recognise it or give it a name but if it is just a numbered star with your name against it doesnt that make it special?

Posted by c pritchard on Tuesday 17th Jul 2012 (20:50 UTC)

Hi, is there any star naming sites which are genuine? I want to buy it for a present and want the real deal? Can anyone advise, it would be much appreciated

Posted by Sam on Wednesday 01st Aug 2012 (19:28 UTC)

What can I say having received one of these gives, and now relised its not real. I guest by the post above Im an idiot. But someones ignorance is someone elses knowledge

and Im wise to a lot of things that are not new to me. Im gutted.

Posted by Sue on Saturday 04th Aug 2012 (21:44 UTC)

Well my partner is planning on naming a star after my little girl i lost last year. and after reading the comments, I still think its an amazing gift and even if its a novalty gift I can look up at the stars everynight and feel comforted that my little isabelle is still my little light but is now shining above me looking down

Posted by Emma on Wednesday 08th Aug 2012 (10:18 UTC)

Very happy with the "star" in memory of my parents. Of course I realise there is no such star but mum would have loved the idea and to me thats what matters most, so yes I look up when the stars a shining and think of my parents. I am about to purchase another as a gift to my son and his bride on their wedding day.

Posted by Margaret Whymark on Sunday 02nd Sep 2012 (13:48 UTC)

I didn't realise ow much of a scam it was until I read it here but I did realise it was only a bit of fun. I've just bought one for my 12 year old goddaughter who lost her father yesterday through illness and for her, it will bring so much comfort to think he's shining up there just for her that I don't care - it's priceless in that sense but I guess it's good to know not to take it too seriously. Appreciate it for what it's for - bringing someone a little piece of happiness in a time of sadness.

Posted by Nicole on Sunday 16th Sep 2012 (08:40 UTC)

It isn't quite as simple as saying its all just pretend but do it if your silly enough to feel good about it. A number of observatory's such as Sydney will put u on a scientifically used chart and many of the fore most astronomers and other scientists have named things in space after them selves for pleasure. Also naming things is what humans do, did u think we change the dna of a child or change a dogs make up to something more human by calling them Sam!

Posted by Dave Traves on Sunday 23rd Sep 2012 (07:01 UTC)

Blimey! Give it up Stuart. Some of these idiots are never in a million stars gonna get what u mean. Let them nane 1 if they want. Lobby ur MP about these companies or summat, but give it up on here mate, ur fighting an uphill battle with some of these dopey buggers on here! Ha ha. I may name 1 for my wife, she loves stars n would be over the moon with it (pardon the pun)! All the rest of u loonies, try reading what poor Stuart has written, he's on ur side!!! Keep bloggin mate!

Posted by John Haggis on Monday 01st Oct 2012 (22:35 UTC)

Oh my goodness people! THE BLOGGER AGREES WITH YOU ALL! All he is saying is that he is upset with the COMPANIES for false-advertising. He completely empathises, sympathises, gets, understands and appreciates the contexts in which these gifts are bought - out of love and care -and has no problem with it. His problem lies with the false-advertising around it all, with companies making people think that the name of the star goes onto an official registry.

I disagree with previous comments that it would be the same as "just buying some other certificate" because I agree that there is something so special and magical about looking up at a night-sky full of stars. And it is THIS notion that the gifts are bought and shared with loved ones.

Again, the blogger UNDERSTANDS this and agrees with this so quit critisising him, his problem is not with you!

Now, I'm going to go name a star for my boyfriend for his birthday so we can spend the evening light-heartedly sitting under the stars trying to find it, enjoying each others company and the fact that looking at the stars is an activity that brings us together.

Posted by Ellie on Saturday 19th Jan 2013 (04:31 UTC)

gravatarEllie, thank you so much for those words. I really appreciate that you got what I was trying to say. Best wishes to you and your boyfriend. Clear skies.

Posted by Stuart on Saturday 19th Jan 2013 (18:54 UTC)

i agree that for some it could be upsetting, but I am going to get one for my new born son - not so he can look up n say 'that's my star' but because it is nice to think for his christening somewhere there is a star i have looked at and paid a small fee to have that little special gift that nobody else can 'do' for him. it is not a traditional christening gift. For my dad who passed away there is one star that i always see and always shines the brightest - i say it is his star, not because it is actually him - just because its a lovely thought. I do think it is wrong false advertising but i think it is a lovely thought. However i dont want my son growing up thinking i 'cheated' him or something similar. what do you think i should do

Posted by youngmummy on Wednesday 27th Feb 2013 (11:15 UTC)

well why pay some stranger for this,look up pick a star even form your own special constellation and name it, all you need to name a star for someone special is a pair of eyes and an imagination

Posted by dane on Saturday 01st Jun 2013 (22:31 UTC)

Plant a tree instead?

Posted by charlotte on Monday 22nd Jul 2013 (17:22 UTC)

Hi Stuart,

I came across your web page as I am writing an article about this topic. It is really a nice source. Thanks for your entries. I will definitely read other writings of you.

There is one thing, I can not find the article you and also many other people has mentioned at other places, probably called "Star naming fun or foul" by Stuart, Cumbrian Sky.

Posted by Tugca on Tuesday 20th Aug 2013 (16:12 UTC)

these comments aren't real are they? they are just written by eight year olds, right?

Posted by JB on Wednesday 02nd Oct 2013 (21:08 UTC)

My girlfriend bought me a star a few years back, it was a nice thought but I didn't have the heart to tell her.

As far as Im concerned, people who exploit others life events for money are the lowest of the low. I mean you star registry companies, crater registry companies and psychics.

And to everyone who said "lighten up" or its "just a bit of fun", please sent me £50 and I'll name a carbon atom after you, I'll even send you an average quality print out that totally makes it legit. These companies exist with all the legitmacy of a website and a poorly maintained database.

The truth is, nobody likes to learn they have been ripped off and are basically paying for someone elses asperational labour free luxury lifestyle. It offends my sense of enlightened self interest.

Posted by Gary on Wednesday 19th Mar 2014 (13:25 UTC)

Very good points made here for sure. I bought a name a star gift set from www.star-registry.co.uk about a year ago for a friend. I agree the gift is amazing, i did notice that it said below its a novelty gift but its not made as clear as it should be.

Posted by James on Friday 09th May 2014 (04:44 UTC)

I guess I see it differently. Sure the star is not recognized by Nasa or the IAU but YOU named it, the companies give you true coordinates to a real star, you get a certificate and a star map... I'm guessing most people don't even know how to locate the star with the given coordinates anyway so they are just looking to the heavens smiling and pretending anyway. What difference does it make that it isn't "real?" It is all about the sentiment. Worrying if a child will grow up to be upset is the same thing as worrying about the tooth fairy and Santa.

Posted by Emma-lee on Friday 09th May 2014 (18:23 UTC)

Truly agree with the blog entry. Selling/telling you lies (products, article, fake news, half-fake news, fake quotes, etc) and when someone finds out then some ppl just say the problem with you because it shouldn't take that serious. How could not be serious about lies which are stated/sold as real (not stating oposite way means it is real)?

Posted by zzz on Friday 13th Jun 2014 (21:30 UTC)

I just named a star as a gift, at 16 quid it cost ten pounds less than the cheapest bunch of flowers I could get delivered, and I am told the presentation box, certificate, star guide etc are lovely. I'm sorry for anyone who gets upset by the thought that it's not 'real' (I don't see what difference it makes!) but I don't see how it's different from any other gift - it's the thought behind it that counts.

Posted by Emma Martin on Monday 23rd Jun 2014 (15:06 UTC)

gravatarEmma-Lee, there are a few problems with what you say. You don't necessarily get "true coordinates of a real star", the "star map" isn't necessarily real and can be confused/useless. Most of the time the people who've asked me have been adults who were then upset because they had bought something that wasn't what it implied it was. To complete your analogy, it may be like a child finding out their present wasn't really from Santa but not realising that it also contained lead paint and dodgy wiring.

Posted by Stuart on Wednesday 27th Aug 2014 (17:18 UTC)

ADD A COMMENT:


Don't provide an email/URL unless really necessary as your comment may get caught in the spam filter. No URLs get turned into links so don't bother. The ground rules for commenting are:
  1. No profanity or personal attacks please. Keep it clean.
  2. Restrict comments to subjects relevant to the post.
  3. Don't mention Pluto. If you do it'll be replaced by Goofy.
  4. No spam i.e. anything commercial unrelated to astronomy.
  5. If you think you've discovered a Theory of Everything, a replacement to Relativity, or something similar then please publish it in a journal rather than in my comments.
Comments against the spirit of these ground rules may be removed.











* required fields