Walmart drops “stores” from its formal name

Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. is set to become simply Walmart. The change, which will officially take place beginning in February, is part of a years-long effort by the world’s largest retailer to get customers to think beyond its 11,600 stores. Walmart, based in Bentonville, Ark., was incorporated as Wal-Mart, Inc., in 1969. The following year, it went public and changed its name to Wal-Mart Stores. Today, the company operates businesses under nearly 60 banners, including Massmart in Africa, Asda in the United Kingdom and Seiyu in Japan.

The “Wal” in Walmart comes from the name of the founder, Sam Walton. On July 2, 1962, Walton opened the first Walmart Discount City store at 719 W. Walnut Street in Rogers, Arkansas. To find out more about the name change, click through to read the article at the Washington Post!

It’s OK to rename your pet!

It is common for people to change their pets’ names. But won’t it confuse the animal? An animal behaviour specialist says it probably won’t because most pets already responded to a range of different names. The way one talks to a pet is just as important as what they are named. The tone of voice, body language, gestures and facial expressions are just as important.

This article at ABCNews summarizes a recent radio program that looks at the issue, featuring Dr Kersti Seksel who explains why it’s OK to change your pets’ name. Do read the comments on the article for fun anecdotes about pets and names!

And listener Ken messaged the station to say cat owners should not worry too much about changing their pet’s names. “It just doesn’t matter what you call a cat … they absolutely ignore you anyway.”

Lost in Translation: Japanese Car Names

Nissan Gloria

At Forbes Asia, Peter Lyon has written a fun article about Japanese car names and how they are perceived in English. As he says, “Often you will come across a name that is simply unusable in an English setting but works in Japan.”

As an example, take the Mitsubishi Canter Guts (a real car). The word “guts” doesn’t have the intestinal nuance it does in English. It basically translates into Japanese as something with strength and power. In fact, it has a positive meaning in Japan. They even have the phrase “guts pose” which renders into English as “punch the air” or “fist pump.”

And what about the Toyota Isis? Launched in 2004, long before the militant group was formed in Iraq and Syria, the name Isis actually refers to a goddess in ancient Egyptian religion.

Want to know more? Click through to read on!

New Trends in Drug Naming

Professor Pascaline Faure (Pierre and Marie Curie School of Medicine, Sorbonne University, Paris, France) had an interview with Tom Whipple of the Times (London) about her forthcoming article in Names entitled “Natesto®. What Else? New Trends in Drug Naming”. In this article, Professor Faure discusses recent trends in drug names – some of which “sounded like espresso coffee machines, such as Ingrezza, Tagrisso, Natesto, Afrezza and Portrazza.”

You can download a scanned version of the article here.

2017 Year’s End Baby Name News: Santa, Angel, and Swati

At the Nameberry blog, Claire Bristow writes about Christmas babies, thankful names for miracle babies, and inspiration from high society. Here are some highlights:

In England, Santa visited a hospital – to give birth. It made the news when a mother called Santa had a baby girl called Rebeka on Christmas day, but it’s not an uncommon name in the mother’s home country of Latvia: it was in the top 100 until 2010.

Mindy Kaling has revealed her daughter Katherine’s middle name, Swati – the name of Mindy’s late mother.

Parents in England have named their daughter Abbey Raye Loxley: Abbey after a doctor named Abey who helped with their fertility treatment, Raye as in a ray of sunshine, and Loxley after a clinic they used.

Head over to Nameberry to find out more!


Fenty Beauty’s Mattemoiselle Lipstick Names Stand Out

Source: Courtesy Fenty Beauty

Fenty Beauty is following up its holiday makeup launch with classic lipsticks. Each hue is based on a different mood, and the names are just as bold as the shades.

Fenty Beauty’s matte lipsticks are called Mattemoiselle. The Mattemoiselle lipsticks comes in 14 different shades that have equally as quirky names. According to the press release, each shade was named with a different mood in mind. Some of them are obvious — like the “moody brown” PMS or the bright orange Up 2 No Good hue. Others are a little more creative, like Ma’Damn and the deep green Midnight Wasabi.

“Lipstick is all about having fun and expressing your mood at any given moment,” Rihanna says in the press release. “This collection makes it easier than ever because there’s a color for everyone.” Click through to this article at the Bustle to find out more!

Call for Papers: Postcolonial Language Studies: Changes and Challenges, Zurich, Switzerland, June 4-6 2018

From the 4th to the 6th of June 2018, researchers working within the area of post-colonial studies are encouraged to attend a special conference in Zurich, Switzerland.  The interdisciplinary conference, “Postcolonial Language Studies: Changes and Challenges”, will encompass the fields of anthropological linguistics, historical linguistics, language documentation, and sociolinguistics. Researchers who are interested in presenting a formal paper are encouraged to submit a 300-word abstract (excl. references) to by January 28, 2018.

Korea Has Started Using English Names – at Starbucks!

In a Korean Starbucks, the baristas’ nametags nearly all bear, in bold, chalky, Roman capital letters, names like SALLY or RYAN or ANGIE. It turns out to have come down from corporate: “Starbucks staff are required to have nicknames,” writes the Korea Times‘ Kim Young-jin. “The reason, company officials say, is to create a culture in which all ‘partners’ are equal.”

In this Korea Blog post by Colin Marshall at the LA Review of Books, he looks at the phenomenon of Koreans using “English” names in Seoul – who does it? And why? And what makes a name “English”?

About Names: Rohingya is a name worth remembering

An exhausted Rohingya woman arrives with her children at Kutupalong refugee camp in Bangladesh after fleeing Myanmar in September 2017. THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Dr. Cleveland Evans writes about names for the Omaha World-Herald. In his January 16th column, he looks at the ANS 2017 Name of the Year.

At its meeting in Salt Lake City earlier this month, the American Name Society voted Rohingya as the 2017 Name of the Year.

More than 650,000 members of the Islamic group Rohingya fled Myanmar in 2017, creating a massive refugee problem in Bangladesh. The Myanmar army has targeted the Rohingya for persecution and massacres.

The American Name Society vote comes in protest of attempts to suppress the Rohingya name and deny them status as people deserving equal treatment and protection from persecution. Each year, the ANS chooses Names of the Year for places, fictional names, personal names and miscellaneous and/or trade names before choosing an overall Name of the Year.

Want to know more? Read on to find out more about the Names of the Year! Unveils the Most Popular Dog Names of 2017

The top baby names of and pop culture rank among the most popular sources for dog names, according to’s fifth annual report of the year’s most popular dog names.

Rover’s data revealed that now more than ever, Americans turn to popular culture for dog name inspiration. In 2017, 8 percent of all dog names were clearly pop culture-influenced. From “Stranger Things” to “Star Wars,” pet owners are naming their dogs after their favorite icons. Also, for the third year in a row, the top baby names of the year are among the most popular dog names. The humanization of dogs has been trending upward every year, with human-inspired names making up a whopping 44 percent of all dog names in 2017—up 57 percent from 2016.

Click through to this article at Pet Products News to find out the most popular dog names!