In news that will come as unsurprising to anyone who hasn’t been living under a rock, the popularity of ‘Karen’ as a baby name has dropped dramatically in 2020.
Huff Post reports that new data from the Social Security Administration suggests ‘Karen’ fell out of favor with new parents in 2020, likely due to how the name became associated with entitled, obnoxious, aggressive, and racist middle-aged white women. The name ranked No. 831 in popularity in the United States for female baby names last year, giving the name ‘Karen’ its lowest ranking on the list since 1927.
Only 325 babies were named Karen in 2020, but the year prior there were 439. That’s the lowest number of newborn girls named Karen since 1932 and contrasts heavily with 1965, which was the peak-Karen year with almost 33,000 Karens born. The name has been gradually losing popularity over the past few decades, and it’s unclear if the memeification of ‘Karen’ as a pejorative sparked the decrease. It is, however, hard not to make some sort of connection here.
On an almost weekly basis, the internet has gotten a new Karen video to talk about. In fact, a TikTok video that circulated last week showed an unidentified woman making a scene at an airport. “I want the manager of the airport here,” she said in the clip, which is essentially the defacto catchphrase for entitled white women in America.
Just last year, dating app Wingman revealed that women with the name Karen have been finding it more difficult to get matched with someone. In 2020, compared to 2019, matches for women named Karen dropped by over 20 percent. “The trends we observe with online dating usually reflect what’s going on in the real world," said the company's CEO and founder, Tina Wilson.