Thursday, May 7, 2009

German Court Bans Extra Long Names

Some people in Germany have extra long names including the Minister of Economics i.e. Karl-Theodor Maria Nikolaus Johann Jacob Philipp Franz Freierr zu Guttenberg.

Apparently, German officials feared that the use of such names might cause administrative problems. Therefore, according to Time, last Tuesday the country's Constitutional Court rejected an appeal by Frieda Rosemarie Thalheim to use her new married name i.e. Frieda Rosemarie Thalheim-Kunz-Hallstein, arguing that it is too long.
The Court’s verdict was complying with a Law introduced in 1993 that bans the use of multiple surnames.
Before that, it was merely illegal to give multiple surnames to a child, because legislators worried that, if the child later marries someone who also had a long surname — and if their children did the same and so on — the result would be endless name chains, which could cause intolerable administrative difficulties for officials.
Thus, the said law extended the ban to couples who wanted to combine their names into 3 or 4 pronged surnames.

As far as I know, Indonesian citizens are free to choose their own names; therefore in this case we are luckier than the Germans. What do you think?


jesseb's anything goes said...

Dang I can see why that would cause problems when here in America we have cases of mistaken Identities great article.

Unknown said...

I guess so ..