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What's in an Americanized Name?

…people who Americanized their given names did better economically thereafter. But how to get around the possibility that those with more energy/ambition were more likely to change names—going from Giovanni…



Zyzmor's Revenge?

…the alphabet are faster at making buying decisions. Why? Kids with the A to I last names were always first in line, whereas kids with last names from R to…



Very Sticky Wickets

In our continuing effort to bring you news of interesting first names from around the globe (see here and here and here and here), please consider this recent e-mail from…



Levit and Dabner?

…change the names of the authors? I can see if you are using a different alphabet you might not have a choice, but would it be normal to take the…



Freakonomics in Action: Name That Baby

…I can do but be grateful I had my children post-30) and the one on baby names. I was pregnant at the time (just gave birth on June 10th) and…



Forecast: There Will Be No More Cash in 2012

…frequency of three names through time gives the main intuition of their result: Here you see the adoption curves, and later abandonment, of three names that were about as popular…



Paying for a Name Change

…that everyone should have Hebrew names. To which Talmi then replied: Thank you for answering. I don’t think the government can force people to change their names. It would be…



Contest: What’s in a Name?

…the names they happen to pick up — even if the names aren’t very good. It has always struck me that a lot of the things we do and use…




A Google-Wrinkle in the Name Game

…product. But, just as women with “distinctively black” names wound up just as well off as women with more traditional names, will a “Kohler” really have much of an advantage…





Sorry, No Marijuana Pepsi in Germany

A German court recently upheld a ban on surnames that are hyphenated three or more times, claiming long names could cause “intolerable administrative difficulties” for German officials. As Time reports,…




"Kevin Is Not a Name — It's a Diagnosis!"

…surveyed associate “traditional” names with positive character traits and non-traditional names with weak performance and bad behavior. The name Kevin has particularly negative connotations; as one teacher wrote, “Kevin is…



Yes, Part II

…finds that in the U.S. population the names Jerry, Dennis, and Walter rank 39th, 40th, and 41st among male first names. But in the national directory of the American Dental…



Price Discrimination? Racial Discrimination?

…name is — in this case — Amanda, Rachel, Katie, Peter, Andrew, or David. I don’t have my master database of black-white names handy (hey, it’s summer), but I’m pretty…



Where Have All the Bobs Gone?

…1,884 Bobs, Sanders [of the San Diego Chargers] is the only one still playing. We’ve written regularly about names and how some just go out of fashion. The fact is…



Call Me Bruce

Women in the legal profession with more masculine-sounding names, like Cameron or Kelly, have better odds of becoming judges than women with feminine names, according to a new study by…



Need a Freakonomics Job?

There’s someone hiring on Craig’s List in Minneapolis: Freakonomics for Baby Names Reply to: jillyouse@yahoo.com Date: 2006-07-11, 9:32PM CDT We are writing a book on baby names and parent occupation….




Contest: Beat This Aptonym

names like Phoebe and Flicker.) In the old days, aptonyms weren’t coincidences; they were professional labels. That’s why there are still so many people named Tanner, Taylor, etc. But in…




A Thug By Any Other Name …

…someone has to do is cross-index the most popular criminal names with the most popular names in general and break them out according to socioeconomic status, etc. As it now…



Chicago police borrow a page from Freakonomics

…The city has begun posting the names and photographs of alleged “johns” on the Police Department’s Web site for all to see, including spouses, children, employers, friends and neighbors, Mayor…



Further Insight on Book Blurbs

…for blurbs isn’t really consumers at all — it’s bookstore and particularly chain bookstore buyers. Those folks, I am told, want to see endorsements from recognizable (i.e., successful-selling) names, particularly…



What's That Database Worth?

…say by how much. The campaign also has lists of volunteers, including the names of neighborhood team leaders who were the most active supporters. A donor database has names of…