My community sounds illiterate!

@steponme - the difference is that today’s parents and children are more educated than the majority of people who lived in the Elizabethan era so I’m going to have to politely disagree with you. Back then, education and literary were privileges of the upper classes and the clergy.

Those are awful.

Actually sometimes the parent’s don’t know how to spell the name. My husband’s middle name is spelled differently because that is the way his father thought the name was spelled-he didn’t know how to spell it. [name]Lukus[/name] instead of [name]Lucas[/name]. It is freely admitted to and well-known in his family. So not all the people who come up with unique spellings do so for uniqueness, they do so because they are indeed illiterate. And that is just sad really. Sometimes the truth is harsh.

My first child’s first name my husband came up with as well as the spelling. I had to go on-line to make sure it was a legitimate spelling. A small change such as throwing an i in [name]Zoe[/name] isn’t a big deal, though the reason behind it is plain stupid. Changing the spelling doesn’t make a name unique in anyway. The majority of the time the name will be spoken, not seen, so your [name]Zoie[/name] is no different than [name]Zoe[/name]. Using [name]Zoe[/name]/[name]Zoie[/name] as the example since it’s already in the thread. Choosing a common name and changing the spelling still gives your child a common name. If you want to change the spelling for other reasons, like you simply prefer how it looks or, as a personal example, using [name]Lukus[/name] instead of [name]Lucas[/name] so that it is spelled the same as daddy’s is fine to awful (depending on how well or poorly spelled the result is). But saying your child’s name is unique when it’s a top ten name just because you changed the spelling is ridiculous.

@mischa, I was being sarcastic.

[name]Catherine[/name] and [name]Katherine[/name] are legitimate variants. There’s a difference between using a legitimate spelling of a word/name because of geography or language (colour/color/couleur) and spelling [name]Chloe[/name] as Klowee just to be ‘unique’.

I’ve heard a lot of parents who chose these sorts of spellings say something like “so he won’t be a little no-name like [name]Ben[/name] or [name]Jennifer[/name] or [name]James[/name].” [that’s the expression used repeatedly-- “no-name.”]

Which actually makes me profoundly sad, because it seems to imply an attitude (largely subconscious on the part of the parents, I’m sure) that the only mark their child will make in the world, the only way they’ll be celebrated or stand out or be remembered at all, is by a uniquely spelled name. Like real ambition and real achievement seem completely unattainable.

As an aside, I think ‘illiterate’ is a perfectly apropos word here, when we’re dealing with matters of reading, phonics, spelling and writing. That’s the literal functional definition of the word. A previous poster made a clever comparison with Elizabethan times, which was partially because English was in flux [it’s much more codified now, thanks to widespread printing] but mainly because the general population could barely read or write, and even that low-level literacy was a new thing, on a population level.

My generation (I am 29) was raised to believe that each and every one of us are individuals and that we are all special and unique. We were taught that we were all going to be great when we grow up and that we can do anything we want to do. So we were basically led to believe that those values were overly important and that being average or common is bad. Sometimes I think that is why my generation is obsessed with finding unique and special names. God forbid if their child is average. As a side note, I am somewhat guilty of this, I will never choose a name in the top 20 for my children.

Also, I agree that illiterate is an acceptable term to use under these circumstances, because that’s how people come across. There are right ways and wrong ways to spell names.

I think you are exactly right!!

Wow, this is a great list. I’m gonna show my husband!

Ha ha ha ha!!! Nice. And hilarious. :slight_smile:

This trend has a knock on impact on us all as it means that with even a simple familiar name you have to ask ‘how do you spell it?’ a million times if doing anything by 'phone, looking for them on Facebook or taking down an email address because they might be [name]Abbigale[/name] rather than [name]Abigail[/name].

This is how I’ve always thought about it, as well. There are many different word names. [name]Paisley[/name], for example. You wouldn’t say “I like paislee/paysli/payslee/paislie/payslie/paislie/paysly/paisli fabric.”, because that’s just spelled wrong. So why would you do that when using a word name. Or any other name, for that matter? And, as harsh as it may sound, it does make those that gave their children those names (early on) and those wearing the names (as adults) seem illiterate based off the misspelled names alone. Especially when parents put so much effort to teach their children to spell correctly and how important it is, only to send them out into the world where names defy the law of pronunciation.

Exactly! It doesn’t only affect the people that have the odd spelled names. The more name spellings get distorted, the more people with traditional names will hear things like “So your name is [name]James[/name], did your parents give you a crazy spelling, too?”, after meeting Jamys, Jaims, Jaimys, etc.

I live in [name]Adelaide[/name] and love the name [name]Adelaide[/name]. However, I won’t choose it because it would be weird. I’m not going to change the spelling to something ridiculous just so I can use the name!

Overall, I would just like to say, I fear for the future of (American) society.


NOt sure it’s just [name]America[/name].

To those getting mad because she’s saying her town sounds illiterate. Well, that’s exactly what it is. Making up your own spelling for any part of a language, including names is perfectly described as illiterate sounding.

I don’t like crazy spelling either. That list of names is awful.

That list is positively horrendous. I couldn’t even finish reading it.

Sadly, I think the people most I pacted by this trend are people with language based disabilities. (I’m one of them). For the life of me I can’t figure out is to sound out words I don’t know. Trying to figure out trendy or creative name spellings not only give me a headache but are confusing, scary and emotionally taxing. (I realize how rediculous that sounds). But considering that I recognize the sounds of words by recognizing the word as a picture it makes sense. This also applies to people where they are learning a foreign language and the sounds don’t instantly make sense. Stupid really to make a language harder for those for whom it is already the most difficult.

That is incredible!!! Wow! Parents want to name their child something unique, so they change the spelling! Why not just give them a unique name in the first place?? Spelled correctly. It’s very shocking actually. I do not like this trend.