Why Diddy has no right to drop the ‘P.’

Benedict Orbase

Benedict Orbase

So Sean “Puffy” Combs, aka Puff Daddy, aka P. Diddy, has decided to drop the “P” in his already watered-down nomenclature, officially going by the name Diddy.

His official reason? According to his statement on the Today show, “the ‘P’ was getting between me and my fans,” citing that it was an inconvenience for fans to be shouting both “P” and “Diddy” during his concerts.


In my book, if you really want to change your name, you need to have a big enough reason. Many name changes have been brought about by something momentous and life-changing.

Take Prince Rogers Nelson for example, also known as Prince, also known as The Artist Formerly Known As Prince, also known as an unpronounceable symbol that desperately tries to look like a cross between the male and female symbols but fails, and most recently, Prince.

His name changes were marked by contractual disputes with his record company, and when his relationship with that company ended, he reverted back to his original stage name.

What about Madonna? Her installation into the Kaballah faith prompted her to change her name to the biblical “Esther.”

Outlandish, yes, but then again, since the 80s she’s been the queen of public spectacle and a master at reinventing herself. No one does it better than Madonna.

Let’s face it, when Madonna starts something, the world follows suit. Remember the henna craze, or the Jesus-is-my-Homeboy-shirts? That was her. I wonder how many mothers have named their kids Esther by now.

Regular people, albeit quasi-celebrities in reality series, are allowed to change their names, provided they undergo an elaborate naming ceremony to mark a milestone change in their life.

The troublesome kids from the ABC show “Brat Camp,” were forced to spend weeks roughing it in the Oregon desert. They hiked all day with a third of their body weight on their back, depleted their body sugar levels by eating nothing but oatmeal, and picked up their own waste.

I think that experience alone should give them license to take on cool names like Reluctant Bison Charging or Insightful Young Hawk or Carving River Canyon or Painted Butterfly or Hypnotic Snuggle Bear (That one’s mine).

Combs is nowhere near as flamboyant or as revolutionary as these two celebrities, nor has he had any life-changing naming ceremonies, so he has nothing to merit this alteration.

He already went through one name change, when he took on the stage title P. Diddy after his breakup with someone named Jennifer.

This doesn’t even count as a publicity stunt. He’s not coming out with a new album to coincide with the name change, nor has he produced anything new of note.

The Pussycat Dolls don’t count. “Getting between me and my fans” doesn’t either.

Sure, he just dropped a letter, but the question is, what’s next? Didi? Did? Does? D?

How about Indecisive Media Hog?

Never mind.