Iceland Name Change Misunderstood

18.9.2012
Words by Paul Fontaine
A contest being held by Promote Iceland to rename the country has been misinterpreted, the office says.

There is currently a contest being held on the Inspired By Iceland home page, asking tourists to come up with their very own name for Iceland. The contest will also take entries at the Keflavík International Airport, and will continue until the end of March.

The contest has apparently inspired more than tourists, however, as some have taken it to mean that this is an actual and serious effort to change the name of the country.

Vísir ran a story on the contest with the headline "Iceland Considered Not A Good Name". After continued public response from the locals as to the purpose of the contest, Promote Iceland felt the need to clarify.

"There are not at all any intentions to change the name of the country or introduce it to people under a different name," Promote Iceland project manager Sveinn Birkir Björnsson told Vísir. "We are just playing with the idea, 'What if?' We are here in a country called Iceland. The name is maybe not very descriptive of the country itself. What if you had the opportunity to change the name? How would people describe their feelings about the country with one word?"

He explained furthermore that even when using whichever new name wins the contest, Iceland will still be in the foreground - it will be used within the context of the sentence "Iceland is my _____."

"The point of the contest is to have fun and create a discussion," Sveinn Birkir concluded. "Not to change the name of the country."

If you want to take part in the contest, visit the Inspired By Iceland homepage linked above.



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