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I recently launched a startup which I named bfffr, playing on the word "buffer" since it ties closely to what the product does. I also chose that name because dribbble and forrst seem to be doing pretty well even with odd names like that. Admittedly I would have liked two f's, but the domain was taken. I paid close attention to how people were responding to the name. Many didn't even know how to pronounce "bfffr". I shortly changed the name to "Buffer", with the domain name bufferapp.com. It has turned out to be a very good decision. Domains may be hard to get, but there are plenty of examples out there that show we don't have to deny ourselves a good name simply because the domain name is gone (just look at all the 37signals products).

"Many didn't even know how to pronounce 'bfffr'".

What's with the even? Do you honestly think that is surprising?

I honestly was quite surprised, but now I look back on it I realise how obviously hard to pronounce that very odd word is. It is very embarrassing to think I started with that name, but I'm glad I was receptive enough to change it and I thought it was worth sharing, as I believe many others may have similar assumptions with naming their startups. I guess that is another lesson that we always need to question our assumptions.

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