I am not a typo (IANAT), a UK-based campaign, has written an open letter to Tech Giants urging them to correct autocorrect and spellcheck spellcheck when it comes to popular names, including many Irish ones.

According to IANAT, "Huge numbers of names popular in the UK are wrong, according to our devices’ English (UK) dictionaries.

"The names deemed wrong indicate that our devices don’t reflect a multi-cultural UK."

IANAT told IrishCentral: "Popular names deemed incorrect by an English (UK) dictionary are often Irish in origin."

IANAT found that across all girls' and boys' names given to children in Northern Ireland in 2022, 1,430 of 3,367 (42%) were ‘wrong’ in testing conducted on Microsoft’s English (UK) dictionary.

IANAT says it analyzed the most recent data on baby names in Northern Ireland released by the Northern Ireland Statistics & Research Agency (NISRA).

The campaign group found that popular girls' names such as Fiadh (148), Eabha (74), and Meabh (55), and boys' names including Oisin (119), Daithi (61), and Odhran (60), were ‘typos.'

Some 882 out of 2,278 names given to girls in 2022 in Northern Ireland were ‘typos,' according to Microsoft Word’s English (UK) dictionary – 36% of names given to girls.

Top 10 Typo baby girls born in Northern Ireland, 2022

  1. Fiadh - 148
  2. Eabha - 74
  3. Meabh - 55
  4. Croia - 33
  5. Roise - 27
  6. Cadhla - 25
  7. Saorlaith - 24
  8. Ayda - 19
  9. Cliodhna - 16
  10. Aine - 15

And more than half - 56% - of the 1,089 names given to boys in 2022 in Northern Ireland were ‘typos.'

Top 10 Typo baby boys born in Northern Ireland, 2022

  1. Oisin - 119
  2. Daithi - 61
  3. Odhran - 60
  4. Fionn - 51
  5. Daire - 50
  6. Rian - 48
  7. Senan - 34
  8. Aodhan - 31
  9. Caolan - 25
  10. Paidi - 25

Supporting the IANAT campaign, Professor Rashmi Dyal-Chand of Northeastern University in the US, author of the paper "Autocorrecting for Whiteness," said: “My name is Rashmi, not Rashi, Rush me, or Sashimi, autocorrect notwithstanding.

"For people with names like mine, autocorrect is not convenient and helpful. It is unhelpful. And yes – it is harmful.”

Also lending her support, writer and journalist Dhruti Shah, who has covered the issue extensively, said: "My name is Dhruti. Not Drutee, Dirty, or even Dorito. And yet these are all words my name has been changed to, often because of an autocorrect decision or a rushed message…

"My first name isn’t even that long – only six characters – yet when it comes up as an error or it’s mangled and considered an unknown entity, it’s like saying that it’s not just your name that’s wrong, but you are."

IANAT further found that 41% of names given to children in England and Wales in the most recent year analyzed (2021) were ‘wrong’ – 5,492 of 13,532. The same English (UK) dictionary deemed popular names of babies born in Wales to be incorrect – like Alys, Seren, and Osian – as well as names of babies in Scotland, including Ayda, Fiadh, Ruaridh, and Lochlan.

In an open letter to the Tech Giants calling for them to ‘correct autocorrect,' IANAT says: "Our children should not be othered by the technology that is integral to their lives.

"And it’s up to the arbiters of that technology to fix it.

"It’s about time that our technology reflected the society in which it functions.”