Name Game: Study Says People With Easier Names Are More Trustworthy

May 3, 2014  |  

A new study was released, which shows people are less likely to believe information if it comes from a person whose name is difficult to pronounce.

Researchers asked a group of participants to review trivia statements from various individuals. Each statement was paired with a random name and participants were asked to identify which of the statements were true. Results showed that statements paired with difficult to pronounce names were perceived less truthful.

Taking the experiment one step further, participants were lastly asked to judge the riskiness, familiarity and danger of the individual solely based upon his or her name. And again, easier to pronounce names were the winner, with the people associated with them being deemed more familiar, less risky and less dangerous.

It’s been a long-standing debate within the Black community: to go with a “unique” name for the bouncing new baby girl or boy, or not to go. We’ve all heard the opinions of those who say it’s easier to get accepted into colleges, or get a job with racially ambiguous names. Then there are those who believe it is our cultural legacy to choose names unlike any others. That stemming back from slave days past, our race has been one that chooses names based upon meanings and uniqueness, not what’s popular amongst the masses.

While we have free will to name our children whatever we’d like, one can never go wrong in making informative, educated decisions before deciding on a lifelong name for their little one. Research, such as this study, is a great way to do just that. It’s important to weigh all sides including, how the public will perceive your child, the importance of meanings, the importance of family legacy and the amount of ambiguity it holds and decide what among those thinking points is most important to you.

More than anything, it’s best to do what feels right for you and your family! After all, you’re the one who will be chasing after the little tyke calling him or her by the name you crowned them with at birth!

Choose wisely, mamas!


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