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April 12, 2023

Franklin Institute digital video series nominated for 'People's Voice' Webby Award

'A Practical Guide to the Cosmos,' hosted by astronomer Derrick Pitts, received a nod; public voting is open through Thursday, April 20

Media Franklin Institute
franklin institute webby award Thom Carroll/for PhillyVoice

The Franklin Institute's eight-part video series 'A Practical Guide to the Cosmos,' hosted by chief astronomer Derrick Pitts, is nominated for a People's Voice Award at the 27th annual Webby Awards.

A Philadelphia museum has found itself among the pool of nominees for an award show that honors everything from streaming services to celebrities.

The Franklin Institute's digital video series "A Practical Guide to the Cosmos" is nominated for a People's Voice award in the "How-to, Explainer & DIY" video category at the 27th annual Webby Awards. 

Described as "the leading international award honoring excellence on the Internet," the Webby Awards have been commemorating the best things online since 1996. The award show is presented by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences (IADAS), which is a judging body with over 2,000 members including internet experts, business figures and celebrities. 

There are several categories available across media types, with two honors for each category: the Webby Award and the Webby People's Voice Award. IADAS members select nominees for each category, as well as the winners of each category's Webby Award. But the public votes on the People's Voice Award.

Iconic Philadelphia figures and institutions are no stranger to the award show, as Flyers mascot Gritty has earned his fair share of wins and nominations. The Philadelphia Eagles, Zoo and CHOP have also been honored through the years.

Philly's latest nominee, "A Practical Guide to the Cosmos," premiered last January. The educational program is hosted by the museum's chief astronomer Derrick Pitts, as well as Kalpana Pot (known as @TokNerdyToMe on TikTok, where she has amassed nearly 170,000 followers). 

The eight-part series discusses the universe, exploring topics like exoplanets, galaxies, black holes and space missions.

Franklin Institute fans have just over a week to vote for the museum's video series, as voting will close on Thursday, April 20. Votes can be submitted online.

In the "How-to, Explainer & DIY" video category, the Franklin Institute's series is competing against "No Stupid Questions with Brandon Copeland,"  "The Art of Street Photography with Hugh Brownstone," "5-Minute Crafts" and "Two Minute Tours."

Another Franklin Institute video series, "Ingenious: The Evolution of Innovation," is an honoree in the same category, a designation which essentially means an honorable mention.

The winners will be announced on Tuesday, April 25, and the Webby Awards ceremony will take place on Monday, May 15. Fans can follow along with the ceremony, which requires winners' speeches to be only five words long, on YouTube, Instagram and TikTok.

For science lovers who want to catch up on the series before casting their votes, the first episode of "A Practical Guide to the Cosmos" can be viewed below. The rest are available on YouTube.

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