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WHO switches to Greek alphabet for virus variant names

20 Comments
By Robin MILLARD

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What’s the Japanese strain called? And China virus is just the proper name for it, nothing wrong with calling it that, I have been and will continue to do so.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

So china has told their servants WHO to get this done for obvious reasons

8 ( +8 / -0 )

What’s the Japanese strain called? And China virus is just the proper name for it, nothing wrong with calling it that, I have been and will continue to do so.

Well said. And while we are on it, if names of countries are stigmatizations, shall we change the name of MERS since it is offensive to Middle Eastern people? And what about the Spanish Flu?

6 ( +6 / -0 )

And coming to a town near you soon soon the “Olympia” variant!

6 ( +7 / -1 )

It’s ironic that many end in an a letter. Yet we can’t mention the original Ch..a variant! Money money money.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

But we have the UK, India variant looks like a Vietnamese variant, the very polite and shy Japan variant. And the beginning variant who’s name we can not say as that might injure someone’s national pride and result in huge tariffs on goods. All Greek to me anyway.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Small letters OK then?

Like WURSα, WURSβ, WURSγ, WURSδ?

We have to relearn the Greek alphabet!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

How do “the Greeks” on campuses ‘feel’ about this? Will this lead to animosities against fraternities & sororities? - “*Not very PC, Bro’! **” *

3 ( +3 / -0 )

As a result, people often resort to calling variants by the places where they are detected, which is stigmatizing and discriminatory.

Why would detecting a variant be stigmatizing and discriminatory? It's not like they created it.

The original virus, on the other hand,....

2 ( +4 / -2 )

As a result, people often resort to calling variants by the places where they are detected, which is stigmatizing and discriminatory.

And also factual. Wouldn't want facts getting in the way. Pretty soon we won't be allowed to call people fat or overweight, because that could be discriminatory, regardless of the facts.

The WHO is fixing a problem that doesn't exist. Wasting time when they should be doing science.

Last time I checked, no virus cares what name it is given. A computer programmer would put something in the same to denote how it spreads (touch/water/surfaces/air/bumping uglies) and how easily it can spread between humans. If giving something a name isn't about conveying more information, then don't bother.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

But now surely all the Greeks feel stigmatized and discriminated, and they don’t even have any of those VOC… They’d better visited a mental hospital with their political correctness and speech restrictions. This world is really becoming more and more sick every day. But that has already started long before corona. ROFL

1 ( +1 / -0 )

They lay some of the blame with former president Donald Trump, who repeatedly referred to Covid-19 as the "China virus"

The truth hurts but Donald was right from day one it is the china virus. Media attacked him at all angles and now its has been officially recognized that China wuhan lab leak the killer virus in a level 2 lab not a level 4.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@Kobe White Bar Owner

And coming to a town near you soon soon the “Olympia” variant!

That would be the omicron variant I believe. But it may be "theta" for Tokyo

0 ( +1 / -1 )

COVID-19 variants are to be known by letters of the Greek alphabet to avoid stigmatizing nations where they were first detected

Err, what? And according to their logic, does that not stigmatize Greece?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

My point is that if anything they should feel pride in the discovery of a new variant.

And the correction is because nobody has said the contrary, that is the point that you did not understand the meaning of the comment.

Plenty of syndromes are named after people: Kawasaki disease, Takayasu's arteritis ...

Obviously, and that brings problems and stigmatization which is why it was decided many years ago for this to change. You may not mind your name being synonym to having an underdeveloped brain, but people named Alzheimer or Parkinson frequently do mind that the first thing other people think after hearing their names are diseases.

The truth hurts but Donald was right from day one it is the china virus. Media attacked him at all angles and now its has been officially recognized that China wuhan lab leak the killer virus in a level 2 lab not a level 4.

Any source for this "official recognition" that the virus comes from a laboratory leak or is it just that you are exaggerating?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

And for everyone without Greek alphabet characters on their computers?

They will be called:

Chinese COVID

South African COVID

Indian COVID

UK COVID

NY COVID

VN COVID

Brazilian COVID

Even adding the -19 is too hard. Most people aren't interested in the 1000 other variants of covid viruses.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Why would detecting a variant be stigmatizing and discriminatory? It's not like they created it.

The original virus, on the other hand,....

Is the "calling" the part that is stigmatizing and discriminatory, not the detecting.

If someone with your name discovered a new syndrome and it ends up being called "yourname's congenital brain hypoplasia" that would make things much clearer.

Also, up to this point there is no actual argument for the artificial origin of SARS-CoV-2, it all depends on not having identified parental strains or the detailed mechanism of transmission, but that would work for anything else (like for example the extraterrestrial origin explanation). At least you can recognize the nonsense of thinking the variants were "created" as some people mistakenly believe.

Err, what? And according to their logic, does that not stigmatize Greece?

Since the greek alphabet is not used exclusively by Greece that doesn't follow, it would be like saying denominating it with alphanumeric characters stigmatize Romans and Arabs.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Why would detecting a variant be stigmatizing and discriminatory? It's not like they created it.

My point is that if anything they should feel pride in the discovery of a new variant.

But as some above have indicated or implied, what drives this changing of the nomenclature is that maybe certain people were tired of people constantly asking why the variants are named after locations but that the original virus was not named after China, CCP, Wuhan, or WIV.

If someone with your name discovered a new syndrome...

Plenty of syndromes are named after people: Kawasaki disease, Takayasu's arteritis ...

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Blame the Greeks!

there are about 2000 variants of SARS. New Taiwan/ Indian variant is most scary. For now...

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

opps, Indian/Vietnamese version.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

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