Except for Maria and Xantippe, the ‘regular’ Dutch phonetic alphabet consists only of male names. Luckily, we can now use The New Spelling Alphabet: a scientifically substantiated list of names that actually does represent current Dutch society. A great initiative that deserved an anchored digital presence. Soe designed and developed the website, (online) campaign and the educational material – pro bono. In order to make this new way of spelling as user-friendly as possible, every user can start practicing on the digital platform we designed and built for it. There, you’ll find a name generator that helps you learn how to spell your zip code, name or whatever it is you need to spell out. With an accompanying memory game and a cheat-poster, we offer fun reminders for anyone who gets stuck while spelling. The education materials we designed help teachers implement the tools to bring up the conversation in class. The New Spelling Alphabet isn’t just a gimmick, but something people can actually put to use in their daily lives.
If we want to create an inclusive society, we need places to practice the new norms that build it. By developing and testing our materials in close collaboration with end users, HR managers and teachers, we were able to test and improve our assets before unleashing them on the greater public. With the website, the cheat poster, the name generator and educational material we triggered new ways for users to start practicing with the New Spelling Alphabet. Because the generator’s outcome was social media-proof, thousands of people were activated to spell – and share – their own name.
Jill Mathon, initiator Het Nieuwe Spelalfabet