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article image'Alexa' not as popular a name: could Amazon be to blame?

By Lisa Cumming     May 15, 2018 in Technology
It seems like parents just don't want to look down at their new baby and think of Amazon Echo's personal assistant. The popular personal assistant is changing the baby naming game.
In 2015 Amazon started selling the Amazon Echo, voiced by a personal assistant named Alexa. That year, 6050 baby girls were named Alexa.
Fast forward and Philip Cohen, a sociology professor from the University of Maryland, decided to crunch the numbers and see what names have declined in popularity. Using data from the United States Social Security Administration, Cohen found that the popularity of the name declined by 21.3 per cent in 2016 and another 19.5 per cent in 2017.
As Cohen writes in his blog:
"You have to feel for people who named their daughters Alexa, and the Alexas themselves, before Amazon sullied their names. Did they not think of the consequences for these people?"
Another drop Cohen observed was for the name 'Donald', Cohen writing "the decline of The Donald has taken on a new urgency." The name dropped in popularity by 4.3 per cent in 2017.
While the declining popularity of these names reflect the tides of the times, the increase in popularity of names does as well. The name 'Malia' (as in Malia Obama?) increased in popularity by 15.4 per cent in 2017. The name last spiked in 2009 — the year after former President Barack Obama was elected.
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