The name game
In my 19-year career, I have not met a John Smith. I have met four men called Mike Parker. I know, via email, two Shailendra Kumars. I emailed an S. Jack Yan—the guy who used to own this domain—around 2002. At L’Oréal Colour Trophy, I met Colin Morley, a photographer—the namesake of my colleague who was killed in the Edgware Road bombing on July 7, 2005.
The Kiwi Colin Morley did not know that his British namesake was killed, and perhaps was a bit worried that I referred to it. But what are the odds of my meeting two men, in different professions and countries, with the same name?
And for those who ego-surf, have you noticed that your namesakes have similar interests to you? I ego-surf, as have two of my friends, and there seems to be some truth in the theory that your name determines who you are.
Can your brand do the same? Posted by Jack Yan, 12:46
Hey Jack, have you read Freakonomics (Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner)? There is a great chapter about names and their supposed correlations. Kinda interesting.
From my own ego-surfing, this guy is my favourite - http://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~dlg10/
# posted by Dan Gordon: 7/30/2006 02:17:00 PM
I haven’t read Freakonomics though I know of it well. I didn’t catch that chapter when ﬂicking through it though, otherwise I probably would have stood at the bookstore for some time. (I was stuck at the airport after a cancelled ﬂight!)
Was it the chapter about the differences between Caucasian–American and African–American names? That one I did have a bigger read about.
The “other” Dan Gordon sounds like a character and his home page design works for me!
i went to school with another Mark Allen. and i've spoken on=line with Mark allen over in LA (he's and artist). and of course there is the world class triathelete.
i think brands are somethign different though. it's in their best intersts to try to subconciously link themslves to values etc in consumers minds but this is done through more subtle manipulations such as surrogate indicators (colours, logo designs etc).
Ego-surfing is fun. You are entertaining a nice thought there, but like many nice thoughts i would not run away with it and generalize. It so happens that my first name is already rare, except in Denmark, and that my family name (one of the relics I kept from my first husband) is very common, but the combination of the two is not. So google-wise it is a fairly unique name, and that has some potential for branding, if only I knew anything about branding.
Namen ist Omen?
Can be, it does not have to be. A rose by any other name would still smell as pretty.
# posted by Dannie Jost: 8/01/2006 07:14:00 AM
I believe words do give off a connotation of some sort, so a unique name may point to a unique individual (like you, Dannie). I know it was far-fetched to say that one’s name determines one’s profession, though I have to say that when ego-surﬁng, the other Jack Yans that creep up have done similar things to me, except for one guy who plays table tennis. It’s still too freaky.
Markoos, any similarity between you and the other Mark Allens?
Thank you for your kind answer to my previous comment. This is a subject that I entertained just the other day as I was looking for some link to a good friend of mine who happens to have a rather common name in several countries so there are lots of fellows out there scattered throughout the world with the same name. He is also like you and I very unique!
You are absolutely right Jack, it is damn freaky when one finds another with the same name, all of a sudden one realizes how much of one's identity is associated with one's name. How would I know that? I changed my first name to Dannie when I was 20 because in there was no way that I was going to live with the name that I was given and constantly be reminded of a very dead person whom I did not know and who was more of a myth and delusion than a reality in my family.
Oh boy, yes you are right. See how I have reacted!
# posted by Dannie Jost: 8/01/2006 08:55:00 AM
I know a few people who have changed their names, one to suit her personality (at eight, insisted on a deed-poll name-change and her father agreed), and another friend, Jack Wild (not the guy from Oliver!), most recently, for his new career as a sexologist. You should have a name you are comfortable with.Post a Comment
For what it’s worth, Dannie Jost is a great name.
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