Product Names That Mean Something Unfortunate In Other Languages.

It is highly recommended to consider other languages when you want to name a product. Otherwise, you will be a laughing stock to people who know a thing or two about other languages; especially to people like us, language nerds. Here are some product names that turned into something unfortunate in other languages:


1. Fart Bar

Fart bar is an innocent Polish candy bar which simply translates to “lucky bar”. But to an English ear, this bar is far from lucky.

2. Lumia

Lumia sounds like a fancy name for a smartphone. But Spanish speakers might chuckle when they hear it because lumia is slang for prostitute in Spanish.

3. Siri

You wouldn’t wanna call on your apple personal assistant in front of a Georgian because Siri in Georgian means cock.

4. Pizza Hut P’Zone

P’zone (pezón) means nipple in Spanish. Pizza Hut were aware of this association afterwards and created an ad that say “whoa, those things are huge!”

5. Pee Cola

I bet you won’t buy a bottle of this even for a cent. But this is the main kind of cola in Ghana and it translates to very good cola.


6. Bing

In Chinese, bing means illness. No wonder why everyone is avoiding using bing like the plague.

7. Starbucks Latte

Latte means erection in German. Nothing is like starting off your morning with a German latte, right?

8. Sega

I wonder how Italians played in this video game console and had fun. The word Sega in Italian is slang for masturbate. That’s why the company changed the pronunciation of its name to “see-ga” in Italian speaking regions.

9. Tonic Water

Schweppes tonic water translates to toilet water in Italian. They ran an ad campaign in Italy to encourage people to drink their tonic water. At least they were being honest.


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7 thoughts on “Product Names That Mean Something Unfortunate In Other Languages.”

  1. I remember reading the list of contributers to to TIME magazine many, many years ago, and one of the contributer’s first name was Zona. In Hebrew, a zona is a prostitute.

  2. The Toyote sports car from the 80s, the MR2, had to have its name changed to just MR in France.
    This is because of the way it was pronounced in French. M like ’emm’, R like ‘air’, and 2 like ‘de’.
    When said as one word, it sounded just like ‘merde’, which translates as a fairly common swear word in English.

  3. In the Czech Republic we love eating “pečená žebra”. You can get them in every gastropub, they’re advertised quite often on boards in front of pubs. Once I talked to an English guy who told me how disgusted he was when he saw these signs – he thought we eat zebras here!!! Well, you can relax, “žebra” are ribs in my language. And those are pork, baked and served with pickles, mustard, horseradish, and bread. And they go really well with our beautiful beers. ?

  4. There exists a brand of mineral water called ‘Blue Water’. It didn’t really take off in my home country, Ukraine, because it sounds exactly like ‘puke matter’ to a Ukrainian language speaker.

  5. Trader Joe’s market is well known for offering a lot of vegetarian and vegan choices. One day I was passing by their deli shelves and I saw a big sign that made me do a double-take. In large letters the sign said SOY CHORIZO, or vegetarian Mexican sausage. But I am from Argentina and to me the sign said I AM A CROOK–soy is the first person singular of ser (I am) and chorizo is an Argentine slang word for a crooked politician.

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