Celebrity Names Blog

Lindsay Lohan Outraged Over Baby Named Lindsay; Demands Millions

Lindsay Lohan Outraged Over Baby Named Lindsay; Demands Millions
MAC/Fame Pictures

How to piss off Lindsay Lohan? Name a bottle-happy baby after her. 

 Lindsay Lohan, who just finished a jail/rehab sentence related to drunk driving charges, does not appreciate rude implications about the drinking habits of people bearing her name. Back in March she sued online stock trading site E-Trade over a commercial that featured a brief cameo by a milkaholic baby named Lindsay. (That link takes you to the milkaholic Lindsay video in question.) According to Lohan, the name Lindsay is off limits for ad men, especially ad men interested in portraying said Lindsay as a plastered man-stealer. Her name's price? One hundred million dollars.

In the commercial, cute babies have adult banter about how the guy didn't call the girl because he was too busy trading stocks on the Internet. In the last seconds of the spot, the exasperated girl-baby says "and you're sure it wasn't because that milk-aholic Lindsay was over"? Uh-oh, busted! Sure enough, Lindsay who loves milk too much WAS over. And that, Lilo believes, was a joke directly at her expense. She prices her emotional damages at a hundred million dollars.

E-Trade has petitioned to get the motion dismissed, claiming their ad men chose Lindsay because it's a popular baby name. (Fact check: about 1500 babies named either Lindsay or Lindsey were born last year; on the other hand, Lindsay peaked in 1984 at #36 and to many sounds more like an 80's throwback than a contemporary baby name.)  E-trade further notes that 1) Lohan isn't the only celebrity named Lindsay (for instance, see our piece on Olympian Lindsey Vonn), and 2) Unlike Madonna, Cher and RuPaul, Lohan doesn't have a trademark on her name. 

But now Lohan's lawyer has rebutted, filing a brief in which she claims that, in fact, Lohan should be granted "single name" recognition, in some contexts at least. In the most intriguing (and, as news sources have noted, hilarious) turn of phrase, Lohan's lawyer argues that the issue isn't how many people in the US are named Lindsay or even how many celebrities are. The relevant question is whether or not, in the context of "the role of the alcoholic bimbus woman," the name Lindsay automatically conjures Lindsay Lohan. And she's got evidence (lifted directly from the headlines of gossip blogs) that says it does.

It's tempting -- and, well, easy -- to laugh off Lohan's lawsuit as a giant hoot. (For serious: her own lawyer calls her an "alcoholic bimbus" IN THE LAWSUIT ITSELF.) However, is there something more to to this tale of litigation and celebrity names? The hundred million Lohan seeks is cash payment for emotional damages. For many of us, our names are a huge part of our identity, and when others "steal" them or "ruin" them, we feel hurt. (To appreciate this, see our own Name Lady's columns on "Miley Cyrus Ruined My Daughter's Name!" and "Your Baby's Name is Not a Battleground.") From this perspective, Lindsay Lohan's campaign to preserve "Lindsay" from jokedom is just the extension of the ownership many of us feel over our names (the ones we wear, and the ones we choose so carefully for our children).

What do you think, readers? Is Lindsay Lohan a one-name star like Beyonce or Cher? Does a dairy-slurping Lindsay automatically make you think of Lohan? And should those ad men have to pay for using the name of this troubled celebrity?

--L.R.

Comments

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September 8, 2010 1:27 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

She might not be a true "one-name" star, but that commercial definitely made me think they were referring to her.

September 8, 2010 6:50 PM
By Mom (not verified)

I don't like the kind of celebrity that Lindsay provides. She is NOT a good role model, and No she should Not be a one- name star!!!

September 8, 2010 8:24 PM
By Sarah (not verified)

Lindsay is too common a name. I did not think of her when I saw the commercial. Now, I just think she's being greedy or trying to get her name in the headlines more.

September 8, 2010 10:21 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

If Lindsay Logan is a one name star then that name would be LiLo not Lindsay. Using a common girls name in a commercial is not related to her.
I heard that Lindsay was the name of one of the staff who worked on the commercial and that's why they picked it.

September 9, 2010 1:31 AM
By B (not verified)

I kind of take both sides - I haven't seen the commercial but it sounds kind of obvious they were referring, in a not-so-innocent type of way, to 'the' Lindsay. I can understand that Lindsay L's distraught, it would be pretty embarassing, but a hundred mill? Come on!

September 9, 2010 8:03 AM
By Elissa (not verified)

I think it's just sad that she's drawing attention to herself in this way. I didn't think Lindsay Lohan when I saw the commercial either, mostly because I don't think of LiLo as an alcoholic, but a coke head! Now, maybe if that baby were snorting evaporated milk...

September 10, 2010 1:20 AM
By Katie (not verified)

Honestly, she's just being stupid. She's the one who's having all these problems with alcohol! She did this to herself. If she was just a "normal" actress (I mean one thats in the headlines for good reasons) then nobody would think of her during this commercial.

September 10, 2010 1:45 PM
By Caitlyn (not verified)

I didn't think of her when I saw the commercial, but I don't follow pop culture all that closely, so that doesn't really mean anything. But I tend to agree with Katie, above - she's the one who made in idiot of herself, and she can't be all that surprised if we notice.

September 14, 2010 12:34 PM
By Nicholas Hentschel (not verified)

If Lindsay doesn't want to be the subject of ridicule, then perhaps she shouldn't hold herself up to it. Besides, grown-ups ignore name-calling; they don't file lawsuits over it.

September 14, 2010 10:00 PM
By cathymac (not verified)

sad but true - mention drinking and Lindsay and Lindsay Lohan is who i think of! Of COURSE The ad folks did it on purpose!To try to get us to believe otherwise is just well, what advertising does - gets you to believe something true or not!

September 14, 2010 11:43 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

I saw it when it first aired and Ms. Lohan never crossed my mind. This is going to sound silly, but Lindsay is just a party-girl name. Substitute Sarah (and I know a Sarah who drinks like a fish), Abby, Angela... it doesn't work (at least not to my ears). Goodtime girls have names like Tiffany, Jessica, Lindsay, Carrie, Andrea, even my name, Melissa - or its sister, Alyssa. As far as the fact that Lindsay isn't so popular anymore, I think that's the point. This is an ad concept with adult themes and situations. A milkaholic named Sophie, Emma, Chloe, or Mia just wouldn't sound right. Lilo needs to back off and find a new revenue stream. I can see how the offense taken would feel genuine given her high visibility, but I'm 99% sure the writers weren't targeting her.

September 15, 2010 9:07 AM
By Elizabeth (not verified)

I remember laughing at that commercial, and it never made me think of Lindsay Lohan at all. Admittedly, my participation in celebrity culture is limited to glancing at the tabloids in the grocery line, but I notice I'm not the only commenter saying they didn't make the connection.

I think Lindsay Lohan is being oversensitive, and that this lawsuit is making things many times worse than the original ad ever could. Even if the ad-makers WERE making an intentional dig at her, which may or may not be true, it would be a hundred times better to let people have their chuckle, and get "revenge" by living well, as they say. Reacting this way only POINTS OUT to the public that her name is becoming synonymous with substance abuse problems. Having her own lawyer announce that " in the context of "the role of the alcoholic bimbus woman," the name Lindsay automatically conjures Lindsay Lohan " is not something that I would think lessens her emotional damage from the incident.

September 15, 2010 11:54 AM
By Lane

Anonymous -- I like your point about how the name "Lindsay" goes better with the out-of-step adult conversation of the commercial than a currently trendy name would. I agree, somehow "Chloe" feel less appropriate or funny for that joke. Lindsay suggests a a person in her twenties, as does the conversation.

May 11, 2014 2:18 PM
By Real World Energy (not verified)

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March 2, 2015 4:08 PM
By Lindsay (not verified)

No when I hear the name Lindsay I think of myself because its my name too

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