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Selling your baby's name

Selling your baby's name

The Hawkins of Goshen Indiana made a big splash when they tried selling the naming rights to their first born.

By the YeahBaby.com editorial staff

Selling your baby

Baby namers fall into different categories. 'Traditional' namers choose common names. 'Eccentric' namers invent their own. Ryan and Jami Hawkins may be the world's first 'entrepreneurial' baby namers. Not being able to afford their upcoming maternity bills, this couple auctioned the naming rights to their first child's middle name on Ebay.

Though the Hawkins both work full-time jobs in their hometown of Goshen Indiana, neither had health insurance for their upcoming maternity bills. Self described as 'easy going and crazy', the couple turned to their creativity and resourcefulness. Jami's pregnancy coincided with the beginning of the 2004 Holiday season. The couple realized they had the perfect gift for the person that has everything - the naming rights to their child's middle name. The parents listed the naming rights on Ebay under the 'Really Weird' category.

As a winning bidder, one could choose any middle name for the child. The Hawkins expected the name to be a corporate name, family name, or an eccentric name. As long as the name was not inappropriate, the Hawkins would gladly accommodate the winning bidder's request. In addition to the naming rights, the winning bidder would receive a copy of the child's birth certificate. The couple set the auction's reserve price at $8000 and promised auction proceeds would go towards the well-being of their little one.

At the end of the auction's first day, the naming rights were up to just $26. The bid price soon skyrocketed as the national press began running stories about the Hawkins auctioning off their child's middle name. The frenzy of attention helped push the naming rights to $500 by the end of the second day. By the third day, the price had sky-rocketed to $5700. But then the Hawkins were dealt a temporary setback when Ebay cancelled the auction due for failure to meet advertising guidelines. Undeterred, the parents met the auction guidelines and listed the naming rights a second time. After a second go around of frenzied bidding, the auction ended with a high bid of $7,999.99. This was just one cent less than their required minimum bid. Though the name was not sold, the Hawkins would entertain offers up until their baby's birth.

After all the fuss about this newborn's middle name, Ryan and Jami welcomed their newborn on August 7th, 2005. It was a healthy and happy 9 lb. 9 ounce baby boy. The world anticipated hearing the name of this newborn. Everyone was surprised to hear the baby's name was Pete Ryan Hawkins, the namesake of his father.

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