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P&G Scheme to Lure Millennials Has Folks Saying 'WTF'

Procter & Gamble files trademark applications for 4 popular acronyms: WTF, LOL, NBD, and FML
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 24, 2018 11:00 AM CDT
This July 9, 2015, file photo shows signage outside Procter & Gamble corporate headquarters in downtown Cincinnati.   (AP Photo/John Minchillo, File)

(Newser) – Acronym-heavy news reports are proliferating after a recent development regarding Procter & Gamble. Ad Age reports that the consumer-goods behemoth has put in the paperwork for the rights to use four well-known letter combinations—WTF, LOL, NBD (which stands for "no big deal"), and FML ("f--- my life")—in association with some of its products. Per CNBC, those items would include air fresheners, dishwashing detergent, liquid soap, and hard-surface cleaners. Quartz reports the trademark applications were filed in April, and that P&G now has until January to respond to requests for clarification by the US Patent and Trademark Office.

There's no apparent sign that any P&G products exist yet using these acronyms in their names. CNBC muses that P&G likely wants to employ these acronyms to reach a demographic that might not be as interested in cleaning supplies and other household items as others: millennials. Quartz notes that going the millennial-friendly route has sometimes gone awry for brands, but it still plays the guessing game as to how P&G may wield these the acronyms, with WTF being a possibility for "Wow, that's Febreze!" and "NBD" serving as a stand-in for "no better detergent," among other suggestions. TBC.... (Read more Procter & Gamble stories.)

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