After banning “bizarre” buildings last year, China’s State Administration for Industry and Commerce launched a campaign this week against a not-uncommon phenomenon in the country: weird and long company names. Monikers that are paragraphs, long sentences, or entire literary narratives, or that include sensitive language or political terms, are now considered “inappropriate.” According to the Legal Daily and some sleuthing netizens, some (translated) candidates for prohibition include:
- Shenyang Prehistoric Powers Hotel Management Limited Company: named for swimmer Fu Yuanhui, who, after winning a bronze medal at the Rio Olympics, declared: “I have used all my prehistoric powers to swim!”
- There Is a Group of Young People With Dreams, Who Believe They Can Make the Wonders of Life Under the Leadership of Uncle Niu Internet Technology Co Ltd., or Uncle Niu, a condom maker.
- What Are You Looking At Shenzhen Technology Co. Ltd., a virtual reality company.
- “Skinny Blue Mushroom”: Some restaurants and cafés have included in their names a phrase made popular by a meme from last year that mocked a man from Guangxi province. “Unbearable, I want to cry,” he moaned, but his accent made it sound more like “skinny blue mushroom.”
- King of Nanning, Guangxi and His Friends Trading Company Ltd., which runs two Vietnamese restaurants.
- Beijing Under My Wife’s Thumb Technology Co. Ltd.
- Beijing Scared of Wife Technology Company
- Anping County Scared of Wife Netting Products Factory
- Hangzhou No Trouble Looking for Trouble Internet Technology
Also a no-go: Names that discriminate according to gender, race or ethnicity, or that reference terrorism, separatism, extremism, religion, the names of national leaders, or illegal organizations. Companies are also forbidden from using their names to imply they are nonprofit organizations.
Despite the new rules, Uncle Niu and some other owners of weirdly named companies the New York Times spoke to have said they plan to keep their monikers for now, or at least until they’re explicitly told to change them.