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Cultural Question: Why do Chinese people choose English names?

I've notice that many Chinese people choose English names. Could some of you please explain why that is done?

Is it just like a "user name" for internet use, or do you use your English name off line, too?
Are chinese names not original enough, or descriptive enough?
Is it done to facilitate computer usage, and if so, why not just use a Pinyin representation of your chinese name?

For learning: Other
Base language: English
Category: Uncategorized



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    Best Answer - Chosen by Voting
    Names are given at birth by their parents, these people who you think that they are chinese, but they are Americans or British by birth. If you are not discriminating against race, these people are not Chinese.

    Hone Kong, China was a British common wealth, those people who where born at that time were possibly chosen to have the English names. ( British Government don't recognized these people are British by birth, they were classified as Hong Kong British, what a shame !!!) Hong Kong British, are they Chinese or British ? neither or either !!!

    Those people who were born in China, their official names are Chinese, their English names are similar to those nicknames.

    My name in English is John Tse, it is official. The other chosen names such as: Yagachi in Japanese, Juan Garcia in Spanish, and Xie chao yin in Chinese are similar to nicknames.


    I like simplicity,efficiency and convenience so I use an English name 'Sam'.

    It's useful in many ways and easier to type,to pronounce,to memorize etc.

    Chinese names can be quite long in Pinyin and foreigners sometimes can't pronounce them easily,like the 'zh','x' sound.

    After all, I like English,that I naturally chose an English name.

    wright, i do not have an english name, hehe. in fact i want to have one, could you please give me one that's really cool??? but not simpson pls. :-D
    zigokunokaze is just roman alphabets, not my english name.
    i think an english name even that's just for internet usage is necessary, because english is the most being used language on the internet. and i also agree with that retsam said.
    besides, people speak english as a second language choosing english names is such a natural thing to me that i think many chinese language learners choosing chinese names for themselves is not strange at all.



    I think it is more convenient for foreigners. If I'll go to china one day I will be happy to simplify my name and I will ask some help from the natives too...
    Why not ?

    yes, is to be easier,

    maybe it is a fashion .

    obviously in any country people will choose a name in global language! to represent them selves in world!

    so now english is global language! so people choose it! it is not only for china! many countries!

    english has became a global language .choosing an english name is convient to communiate with foreigners.

    Hello Mister Wright,

    I was wondering like you and had to ask many Chinese to know it .
    One reason is that their names are written with their family name first and their given name next, so when they immigrate or do business with Western countries they sometimes reverse their name order from "surname-given name" to "given name- surname" ,so for example "Yao Ming" becomes "Ming Yao".
    More often they adopt a western name, an English if they are in an English speaking country, french if in a french speaking country etc.
    They also think that will facilitate the communication with Western, because their names are difficult for them to pronounce and sometimes long as well and they realized that many Western can't manage to memorize them.

    It is a qusetiion of fashion I think.All these can be explained own to strog of English.As a widely used language in the world and expanding Globalization we chineses all fall into it.

    In Australia, they do it to fit in and for some it is to avoid embarrassment. For example the name Wee means 'urine' in English, so it is understandable that a Chinese student would choose a different English name.

    I'm a chinese.My major is English.Our foreign teacher give every of us a english name for easy to call.we need to learn english.just as some of you have a chinese when you learn chinese.

    To me.I have an english name when i started to learn english.just to make it simple. if use my Chinese in pinyin TENG SHAOQIONG as my usename would be too long and maybe uneasy to read by foreign friends.and also pinyin read by english way sometimes very different from chinese way.we just try to make it simple. so it all depends.if my pinyin is simple i that will be cool just use pinyin as use name/..:)

    To blend in the west culture.^^

    just for fan

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