For usernames, etc., you usually see like ユーザ名 or something similar. Or like on my Skype, it says Skype名. How is the 名 pronounced in these situations? I've never been able to conclusively find this anywhere. My instinct tells me it's because these seem like compounds nouns (like 星空【ほしぞら】, etc.) that use kun-yomi.

  • 3
    I have seen this mysterious single-word sentence “Topic.” at the beginning of some of your questions. What does it mean? Nov 11 '11 at 3:34
  • It means the main question I want to ask is in the title itself, so I don't want to repeat it in the body of the post (even though I did in this one anyway. Oops).
    – istrasci
    Nov 11 '11 at 3:36
  • I see, but I think that you can omit it and it will make the question easier to read. Nov 11 '11 at 3:37
  • Yeah, I guess really you'd only use it if you had nothing else to add in the body.
    – istrasci
    Nov 11 '11 at 3:40
  • 1
    It's interesting though how in Japanese you don't have to verbalise while reading kanji. E.g., in 「Skype名」 you just see ‘name’—no need to think how exactly to pronounce 名 (unless you have to say it out loud). I think it's cool—you quicker get to the meaning, skipping unnecessary reading. On the other hand, it's probably since I'm just a beginner and don't know how to pronounce things. =) I'm curious whether native speakers usually verbalise written kanji or not… Although I guess it's not easy to find out. Nov 19 '11 at 17:30

It is read as めい. “ユーザ名” is read as ユーザめい, “Skype 名” is スカイプめい.

I do not know the reason for that, but if I make a guess, this may be because gairaigo in a compound word is treated in a similar way to Sino-Japanese words.

  • 1
    Yes, here is the example itself in this article (however much trust one assigns to Wikipedia).
    – istrasci
    Nov 11 '11 at 3:31
  • 3
    After thinking about it a little bit, reading “Skype 名” as スカイプな seems cooler than スカイプめい (probably because I am too sleepy now). Nov 11 '11 at 4:36

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.