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Ask Baby Names

Baby name advice from Jennifer Moss, founder & CEO of BabyNames.com

Why do Top Name Lists have Different Names?

Hi Jennifer,topbabynames2016

I see several different sources that post the Top Baby Names of the Year, but they’re different. Why is that?

Sincerely,
Rebecca H.

Hi Rebecca,

Yes, you are right! First, I’ll note the differences between our top name rankings and the U.S. Social Security list. Our rankings are calculated from the names our millions of users add to their favorite name lists throughout the year. The Social Security list, which usually comes out in May, is a ranking of names of actual U.S. baby births. One major difference is that the Social Security office does not combine stats for different spellings of the same name like Aidan and Aiden. We do. We treat different spellings as the same name.

As for other baby sites, we have no idea how their stats are derived. But you can always trust our statistics! BabyNames.com has been the #1 trusted source for names and naming for 20 years and we employ a data analyst and name experts who take great pains to make sure our lists are accurate.

We’ve also found that our rankings tend to predict the U.S. birth trends from 1-3 years!

I hope this has answered your question…thanks for writing!

Jennifer