Replacing letters with numbers ~ Bad Product Names

Friday, May 25, 2007

Replacing letters with numbers

Here are some names which have their letters replaced by numbers. This isn't new at all, it is just cashing in on the leetspeak phenomenon (or "l33t" if you prefer).


Driv3r: This should be pronounced "driv-three-are", since the 3 is placed at that point in the word. If it is really "Driver 3", then put the 3 where it is supposed to be! What's the next one gonna be called? Driv4r, Driv5r, Driv6r.....



Th3 Plan: What the hell is this? "T-H-three" plan? Ohhh, it's actually the word "The", with a useless 3 instead of the letter E. Just shows you how ridiculous these names are getting.



Numb3rs: "numb-three-R-S". Okay, so it makes a little sense seeing that the show's premise is "numbers", but do you really need to drop the number in the title. Those that read about the show in newspapers and tv guide will sometimes think that the editor made a typo, seeing that the '3' key is right above the 'e'.

The more closely you look at these names, the more you realize what a mess these names really are.

I know some of you think that leet speak is cool, but just think about 10 years from now. What will we really think of these names by that time?


34 comments:

Acolyte said...

I disagree. You might not like the replacement strategy, but it's a fairly mainstream technique now which all people understand - not only 1337 geeks. We understand that it's Driver with a 3 for an e, not DrivThreeUr. For Driv3r and Numb3rs it also makes sense - the 3rd driver game, a show about numbers.

It also changes the name from a generic word to something that is specifically this product - Driv3r the game, as opposed to the driver who brings you to work. Numb3rs the show, as opposed to just plain old numbers.

Also, Se7en was earlier than either of these. And it works there too.

john said...

It makes the name look sloppy though, just take a closer look at the names.

Would you really stick a number right in the middle of the name? It just doesn't *look* right. For sequels, just use the number following the name, there would be nothing wrong with Driver 3. Driv3r looks horrible, the 3 is just out of place.

For Se7en, the 7 looks nothing like a "v". On movie marquees, I recall they just called it "Seven" to avoid confusion.

webd360 said...

I think its good with Driver 3 and Numbers because they both make sense (since the 3 in driver is because its the 3rd version and the 3 in numbers in because it is about numbers).Also, the audiences of that game and that show are pretty likely to know what they mean by the 3.

Carl said...

I had an article once. Most of the words in it were misspelled. The only letters they made sure was right was the First and last letter of each word.

You could hand that article to any fluent reader and they could easily read the entire article.

When we read we often only see a few of the letters clearly and the rest are filled in by your brain. (yes there was an actual study on this)

Few people would have a problem (native readers anyway)with Driv3r and in many cases if the 3 didn't sit higher than the other letters, many people wouldn't even notice.

skip said...

Is it a trend nowadays? Numbers replacing letters. Some of it I think make sense. Sometimes i use number to replace E in spelling my name too.

Cullan Hudson said...

I'm with you 50/50. In some of cases, we see clever, playful, and often effective design solutions to incorporating the meaning of a number ("Numbers", a trilogy) with its similiarity to a letter in any given word. But you are right; sometimes "playfulness" becomes typographic idiocy, as seen in "5ive".

palm treo 800w said...

I guess the numbers look cool to teens??

miley cyrus said...

I'm so sick of the cool numbers. It's been done to death.

HDRKID said...

Remember the movie "S1M0NE" about a virtual actress?

Amina said...

Good words.

Pozole said...

Not original anymore.

642-971 said...

Would you really stick a number right in the middle of the name?

Medical Employment Australia said...

When this first came it may be a different style but now it's rather outdated. But there may be chances where it can look good.

Krakow tours said...

I think that it can work in some situations but not in all. So it comes down to specifics. Sometimes it will work and other times it won't. Just like all things :-)

diamond engagement rings said...

Yes got to agree that, it doesn't always look correct, and it's funny about the 3 and E as it definitely must have been a typo the first time it was used, as you mentioned about the keyboard placement.

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Anonymous said...

The author of badproductnames.blogspot.com has written an excellent article. You have made your point and there is not much to argue about. It is like the following universal truth that you can not argue with: A Hermit never has peer pressure. Thanks for the info.

pool winter covers said...

Replacing letters with numbers is cool when using it in a title to attract peoples attention but, using it in an article? LOL!

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I think its good with Driver 3 and Numbers because they both make sense (since the 3 in driver is because its the 3rd version and the 3 in numbers in because it is about numbers).Also, the audiences of that game and that show are pretty likely to know what they mean by the 3.

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