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The FREAKest Links: Little Shop of Kidneys Edition

Organ donation is heading from a bogus reality show to the big screen: An A.P. article reports that Paris Hilton has landed a role in the movie Repo! The Genetic Opera, a so-called “horror rock” musical that’s “set in a plague-ravaged future where people can purchase new organs on the installment plan from a corporation called Geneco.” Hilton will play the “fame-seeking daughter of Geneco’s owner,” played by Paul Sorvino.

We’ve devoted plenty of time to discussing the effects of individual’s names, but what about the names of companies? De Montfort University finance professor Panagiotis Andrikopoulos has published a study on the “predictive power of corporate name changes on companies’ subsequent long-term stock market performance,” using a sample of 803 company name changes over 15 years. His results indicate that, on average, a name change is viewed as a sign that the company is in trouble (regardless of whether or not it actually is), and the stock price takes a subsequent hit. (Hat tip: John De Palma.)

In response to Levitt’s questioning of the current academic publishing system, reader L. Shane Carlson informed us of his new project,, an online professor’s network that allows academics to publish papers, receive instant feedback, share podcasts of lectures, and, of course, blog.