Just sent this email to my bank

This has been a source of frustration for some time, and I’m finally doing something about it.  I’m totally serious here, and I can’t wait to see what the answer is.

I have a question about nicknames for accounts.
I have named each of my accounts without trouble, except the one I would like to call tithes.
Your site does not permit me to use that word or anything similar.  I tried tithing and tithe, and was forbidden each time.
I was allowed to name it anything else I wanted: church, money for God, Brittany Spears, koran, nonsense, asdfklfg, brothel, etc.  Every name is allowed except tithe.  Oh – and John Wayne.  That wasn’t allowed for some reason.  Is there a connection?  I don’t know, but I hope you do.  I think this is absolutely bizarre and would love to know how Wells Fargo explains it.
I have tried multiple times on many different occasions, and always get the same results.
I asked about this at a local branch and received a puzzled reply – he simply had no idea.
Do you?

I also thought about trying out the name Drug Money but that seemed a bit risky, a little like greeting a Border Patrol officer in Spanish.


I received this prompt response, but it was only halfway helpful:

We apologize that you experienced difficulty accessing in nicknaming your account(s) online. This issue has been resolved.

I have completed your request to nickname your account tithes ending in ****.

We monitor our systems continuously, seven days a week so that we can correct problems quickly when they do occur. Most times it is a momentary problem. We are dedicated to providing reliable online service.

Whenever you need account information, please contact us at 1-800-956-4442. Bankers are available to assist you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Thank you for your patience.

[name removed for privacy]
[My Bank] Online Customer Service

Here’s my followup email, sent just a moment ago:

Thank you very much.  My account finally has the name I wanted, but my curiosity is not allayed.
Can you explain why the system would not allow me to assign that nickname?

I really like Maggie’s and MBR’s theory, but I want to verify it – and I want to see if the bank can figure it out themselves.  I scratched my head over the issue for months.  Let’s see if they know the answer to their own puzzle.


  1. ha ha ha. l love that the comments have made me laugh as much as the original post! Celee I am with you, I had NO idea you could name accounts. good post!

  2. I’m guessing the problem with John Wayne is similar, though not as obvious. I wonder how insane their profanity filter programmers were… A John can be a bathroom/toilet, or maybe male anatomy would have that as a nickname…? I’d be trying words like appetite and class just to see how silly they were… hehehe…

    • Michelle,
      I did try several other words that had those 3 letters in sequence, and every single one was refused. I’m sure that must be the answer. I’m just amused that the bank still doesn’t have a clue.
      Regarding the word “john,” I think it can also refer to a prostitute’s customer. Between that and the potty talk, I guess it could be ruled out.

  3. I think its the profanity. I’ve seen this happen online various times: profanity is not allowed, so larger words that have the letters that makes up a profane word in the correct order in them either do not work or get turned into ****.

    Although why John Wayne doesn’t work is completely baffling: I’m looking but I don’t see any profanities inside those two words. Hmm.

  4. whatever you do don’t put drug money. They might freeze your account. My mom trains and sells narcotic detection dogs and someone bought and paid her for a dog through paypal to have it shipped to them. In the subject line they put “drug dog” and it completely froze my mom’s paypal account. It took almost two weeks to get it straightened out. I would hate to see your money get tied up like that. Very curious!

  5. LOL!!! This is too funny!!!

  6. PLEASE let us know what they say! I’m very interested in their response – whether they even know 🙂

  7. Bizarre! Let us know what they say

  8. “Drug money” sounds perfectly acceptable. Some of those prescriptions do NOT come cheap. Siiiigh. I guess some people out there ruin the account naming for the rest of us.

  9. Is John anything allowed? I don’t know about that one since Brittany Spears is allowed.

  10. You’re way ahead of me. I didn’t even know you could nickname accounts!

  11. Look at the first three letters in tithe.
    I think it has a spam filter that is disallowing that word.

    • Maggie and MBR,
      That’s a good theory. In that case, I wonder why John Wayne wasn’t allowed? I’m off to test a few more possibilities…

  12. It may be because it contains “tit” Some profanity filters will screen that out.

Don't just think it: say it!

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