New father's 'name game' goes viral

A father in northwest China's Shaanxi province named his daughter after one of the country's most popular mobile games. Then the Internet found out.

A father in northwest China's Shaanxi province named his daughter after one of the country's most popular mobile games. Then the Internet found out.

The baby girl, born on August 1 in Huxian County, was named Wang Zhe Rong Yao, or King's Honor. King's Honor is a multi-player game, with more than 200 million registered players in China, or one in seven Chinese people.

A photo of the girl's household registration page -- a key personal document identifying a citizen's place of residence -- went viral online, with web users asking why the family gave the girl such a name.

New father's 'name game' goes viral

"I didn't expect this name would set the Internet abuzz," said the father, 31-year-old Wang Guan.

In an interview with Xinhua, the IT worker emphasized that he is not addicted to the game.

"I once worked for Honor (a smartphone brand under Huawei). So I like this word. My daughter's nickname is Rong Yao (Honor)," he said.

According to Chinese tradition, a celebration is held when a baby reaches one month old. While Wang was dining with guests at the gathering, he showed them the registration page.

"Someone took photos, but I asked them not to post them online," he said. "Now that everyone has seen it, I can only say 'thank you' for their 'big gift.'"

This is not the first time a Chinese parent has given a child an unusual name.

In 2009, a couple in east China's Jiangxi province tried to name their son Zhao C, with the letter "C" as the given name. But they failed to get the name registered.

In 2015, a Mr. Lyu in Shandong province sued local police over their refusal to register the birth of his child, because he wanted to name his daughter "Bei Yan Yun Yi," without a surname. Three public security bureau substations turned down his request.

Wang Guan, however, managed to get his daughter's name registered.

According to an unnamed police officer with the Sanqiao police station in Xi'an, Shaanxi's capital, the name didn't violate any regulations.

China's laws stipulate that all Chinese citizens have the right to choose names for their children, but names should "respect social morality" and should not damage the public interest. The surname can be that of either parent, and the given name should be two to four Chinese characters.

Some people saw the name as the product of a new era.

"Chinese names always bear distinct features of the times," said Jiang Meng in an opinion piece on the website of broadsheet People's Daily. "Our grandparents were named Jianguo (founding of the country) or Aihua (loving China). They were fashionable at the time, but outdated now."

"At a time when people like to stress individuality, this name is understandable. It grabs our attention now, and will be outdated later as well. No need to make a fuss," Jiang said.

However, most web commenters thought the name was improper.

"What will the girl think when she hears everyone saying, 'Let's play Wang Zhe Rong Yao?'" asked user "Pumixuan" on Chinese microblog site Sina Weibo.

"The parents are irresponsible," said Yincheng, another Weibo user. "They were just amusing themselves, but did they ever consider that their daughter will be mocked for this silly name when she grows up?"

Wang Guan told Xinhua that he had already prepared to be criticized.

"I worried before registration whether the name would be inconvenient for her," he said. "So I have decided that when she grows up, if she wants to change the name, then it is up to her."

He also asked that netizens stop sharing the photo of the registration page, which carries personal information such as her ID card number.

"My girl is innocent. Please respect her privacy," he said.

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