ECHAEno. 3

What's echae?

Finding an empty, high quality domain name can be quite a chore. Ninety-eight percent of the english language is spoken for, meaning that whatever great idea you have its probably already taken. And in this industry, we're afraid, its first come first serve.

Its a bit like naming your newborn baby Sarah and having someone say, "Sorry, we already have one named Sarah".

"Okay, then how about Jane?" you ask.

"Nope, that one's taken as well", they reply. "Still, there are a few good ones left. Aha! Here's an interesting one that you might be interested in. What do you think of Snarglfu?"

But everyone has to have a dotcom, so we see a lot of companies with obscure unpronouncable names like "Banfzed" or "Shooki". Which, the marketing literature informs us, is Swahili for "forward thinking". And you're thinking, "I'm looking for a forward thinking company, I think I'll do business with" Right.

In reality it doesn't matter what the word means in some obscure language, only what it conjures up in your language. To us "Shooki" sounds like a 80s Japanese arcade game where you play a smiling yellow blob that destroys the evil mutant slugs by pouring sparkling magic salt on them.

Now we don't have a company and we're not trying to sell anything. We just want a little bit of the internet that we can call our own. Somewhere to put information to share with the world. So we didn't want a word that would conjure up anything in particular, because we weren't sure what kind of information we would display and what the site might become.

So we chose a short, nonsense word that would come up tops in a search engine. We did our share of research and it does have historical roots. From Celtic-Latin writings echae means "noises", which is alright. In Ekegusii, an African dialect, its the word for tea. But when asked to comment on what echae mean to them, the reaction was extremely diverse, but overwhelmingly positive.

So echae it is and it will become to mean whatever it becomes to be.

Bryce Ashdown