Who gets to kname the knut?

In The Bear that came in from the cold, the IPKat related the sad tale of a fluffy little lost bear, abandoned on the roof garden of Olswang's Berlin office with nothing but a barcode (bearcode?) and a trade mark tag to keep him warm. A prize was offered to whoever could come up with the best name for this cute little creature, and the IPKat, aided and abetted by Merpel and Tufty, has been considering the best entries.

Right: this poor bear must roam the wilds in search of food and happiness, having failed to gain admission to any German zoo. Next year he will be too big to sit his Eisbärjungesaufnahmeprüfung (polar bear cub entrance examination)

Disappointingly there was no entry from Craig Smith (Freehills), who has already won two IPKat competitions over the past few years and who, like all great antipodeans, has a truly competitive streak. Knowing his success in these matters, the IPKat suspects that he may already have a cupboard (or should that be cub-board) full of the little fellas, trophy bears from previous competitions. Merpel says, there may be a gender issue here too: usually most entrants in IPKat competitions are male, but this time it was the women who provided the bulk of the name suggestions.

Geographical allusions to Berlin were suggested in the form of Bearlin (or, with umlaut, Bärlin). The bear's diminutive character and sweet disposition were also recalled, through such notions as Cutie Paws and -- these being diminutive Bulgarian terms for a little bear --Mecho or Mechentze (who said he had to have an English name, or a German one). One contestant suggested: "If a little cat is a kitten, maybe a miniature Knut could be called a Knutten". Indeed!

Other aspirants took note of the INTA background to the bear-lost-and-found saga. For example we were offered Binta ('B', for 'bear' + INTA) and Outa (since the bear wasn't registered for the Meeting. Also hypothesised was Intapol: the cub was found during INTA, looks like a POL(ar bear) and might help, support and assist some diligent IP lawyers in their international pursuit of IP fraudsters, etc.

But the wackiest, most devious suggestion -- and the winning one -- comes from Bernadett Keczer (Lovells), who says: "I would name it Sir Arthur Kingsley - Arthur alluding to Arctus and Kingsley to its being on the top of the food chain". Congratulations, Bernadett. Your bear will be posted off to you next week, by which time the IPKat should have found a Post Office in England that hasn't yet been closed down.

Thanks, all of you who entered -- even those who didn't abide by the rules (though Frozen Steiff has a merit all of its own ...)
Who gets to kname the knut? Who gets to kname the knut? Reviewed by Jeremy on Friday, May 30, 2008 Rating: 5


  1. C'est donc un ours qui se fait appeler Arthur...

    Which somehow makes sense, since this French expression derives from German ("acht Uhr!").

  2. I liked Knutten best. Can we have a referendum next time?

  3. I love "Frozen Steiff" best - that is definitely my favourite!

    "Can we have a referendum next time?" - I agree with tillie b, a poll would be nice.

  4. Birgit, Tillie

    It's really easy to manipulate such polls. :(

  5. Sorry Birgit, this is a blog based in the UK. The British don't do referendums - they just keep promising to hold them until people (hopefully) forget about them.

  6. This member of the IPKat's team is old enough to remember participating in a referendum - back in 1975, when dinosaurs roamed the plains and English football teams still consisted of English players. You can read all about it here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Kingdom_European_Communities_membership_referendum,_1975

  7. I think Birgit's a cool name for a polar bear. If it's got a price tag it's probably a she anyway

  8. How about Sheba (="she bear") then?

  9. I love the comments on this blawg, but don't you guys ever have to work for a living?


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