For Sale: Baby Names

You Could Win Big Bucks for Naming Your Kid After a Web Site

By Buck Wolf

Aug. 17, 2000 — Even in America, that great bastion of free trade, you still can’t sell your babies.

But now there’s help for parents who want to make a quick $5,000 off their child’s name.

If you are expecting a child and want to pocket some quick diaper money, just name the kid Iuma, after the Internet Underground Music Archive. As part of a marketing campaign, the Web site is awarding cash prizes to the first 10 entrants who can verify their baby’s name with a birth certificate and a photo.

“We didn’t have much of an advertising budget, so this seemed like a great way to spread the word about good music,” says Antony Brydon, Iuma’s general manager.

“You’ll be showing your commitment to great music. Your child will have a super-cool name. And you’ll win money. What could be bad?”

Iuma Thurman?

IUMA considers itself one of the oldest music sites on the Internet. Unlike Napster, it charges users and pays artists royalties for music listed on its site. And its mission is to remind the world that there is more to music than Britney and the Backstreet Boys.

In the past, it’s been a hub for such progressive acts as Mermen, Gangsta Bitch Barbie and Sublime.

“We’re on a mission to revitalize music, and we want IUMA on the tip of every tongue in the country,” says IUMA founder Jeff Patterson. “What better way to send our message through every classroom, home, and playground in America?”

Hard-core music fans might want to forgo the big cash payout and opt instead for IUMA’s promise of $100 a month of CDs, digital downloads, concert tickets and merchandise from musicians on the site.

But practical parents might invest the five grand in a college fund. If you could secure an investment that yields a 7 percent annual rate of return, and that child, at 18, would have a nest egg of about $17,000.

Sure, there’s a down side. Once you collect your prize, you’re stuck with the name, and your child has a built-in boogeyman just waiting to pop out of the closet when teacher takes attendance: “Ally, Bryan, Caitlin, … Iuma? Iuma? Where are you? Are you sniffing the glitter glue again?”