Top 10 Notable Names: Class of 2013

Here at Light Reading Towers, we are always on the lookout for mad monikers -- whether it's ridiculous company names that should have never made it beyond a PowerPoint slide or personal handles that sound as if they belong to someone else or were made up in the pub.

We've been identifying outrageous names for a while now, though there were a lot more options in the days when VCs were prepared to throw money at startups with names that sounded like a nasty rash. (Anyone remember Spirea? See 50 Worst Company Names.)

Here's the pick of our most recent harvest…

  1. Ooredoo
    It used to be called Qatar Telecom. Dull, but it made sense. And then someone must have watched an episode of Scooby Doo. If only someone in the marketing department had said: "Ooredon't!"
  2. Assmanntelecom
    It's French, but that's no excuse. One for the annals.
  3. Arsys
    We've found a furrow and we're gonna plow it. All right, it's not really a telecom company, it's a Web hosting firm, but for Arsys we're prepared to make an exception.
  4. Ryan Pellet
    In another life, he could have been a hard-boiled detective. In this one, he's senior vice president of Nexidia.
    It looks like a challenging hand at Scrabble, but it's actually an outfit that sells VoIP services to enterprises. It's the one they ask for by name.
  6. Ed Drilling
    In another life, he could have been, er... something in the less wholesome reaches of the movie industry. In this one, he's president of AT&T Arkansas.
  7. Splunk
    This big-data analytics firm claims that its name is "derived from spelunking," spelunking being something to do with caves. It still doesn't work.
  8. John Barnicle
    By rights, he should be steering a trawler through the Northwest Passage with a pipe clenched between his teeth. Instead, he's wearing a suit and being CEO and president of Peerless Networks. Shame.
  9. Powwownow
    It's a conference-calling service that acquired Yuuguu in 2010. Not sure which is worse.
  10. Genius Wong
    Senior vice president of Global Network Services at Tata Communications. Who wouldn't want this on his business card? It's so right -- and yet...

— Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, Light Reading

DOShea 10/26/2013 | 11:43:40 PM
Splunk Splunk should never, ever try to explain the derivation of its name that way again... ever. They should just say its a made-up word with no connection to anything else, especially not spelunking.
TeleWRTRLiz 9/3/2013 | 5:20:53 PM
What's in a name? I keep a running list of interesting names that I run into, one of my recent favorites is Mike Miracle. Company wise, my friend who was in the Peace Corp in Armenia a while back sent me a box top from her favorite laundry soap....it was called Barf.
mendyk 8/28/2013 | 10:45:32 AM
Re: Notable names An honorable mention has to go to NSN, for its brilliant name change to NSN.
PaulERainford 8/28/2013 | 10:35:25 AM
Re: Notable names Don't get me started on Everything Everywhere...
C Chappell 8/28/2013 | 10:33:53 AM
Re: Notable names I gather 'Ooredoo' in Arabic is about as noteworthy as calling a company 'Everything Everywhere'. At least it gets noticed. And who wants a homogeneous world?
Sarah Thomas 8/23/2013 | 12:17:50 PM
Re: Former Nortel Colleague I met a nice guy who works for Mosiak Solutions named "Chip Strange," but I guess his name would only be strange if he worked for a chip company...
PaulERainford 8/23/2013 | 7:05:14 AM
Re: Former Nortel Colleague Cue the 'bad habits' joke...
pdonegan67 8/23/2013 | 5:16:13 AM
Former Nortel Colleague When I worked at Nortel, one of my colleagues was a fellow called Randy Nunn. I know - one for Brits.
PaulERainford 8/23/2013 | 5:06:50 AM
Notable names Explanatory note to all the individuals featured here: Remember, we're laughing WITH you, not AT you. As for the companies, we are laughing at you.
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