The days of simply having someone's name and phone number on your cell phone contact list are long gone. While this isn't completely new, there is an ever-increasing trend of giving people in your cell phone nicknames rather than entering their actual name.

Some people do this to be funny, and others do it to protect their friends and family if their phone is lost or stolen. Certain people even use this tactic to hide information about secret lovers or other individuals nobody should know about.

In any case, there are certain nicknames you should probably avoid. As private as you think your phone may be, losing your phone, getting hacked, or even forgetting it in a place where others can see it if the phone rings could lead to embarrassment.

Here are some nicknames to avoid as you're entering that new contact into your phone:

  1. Nicknames that are obviously sexual - Describing someone's nice body or declaring the purely intimate context of your relationship with someone as a part of their nickname in your phone is an obvious no-no.  Nobody needs to know that you have a stable of partners logged away in your phone - especially if the person that discovers it is your significant other or one of your other hookups. Who knows, the person it's about may not even be flattered by it. Keep your "sweet ass" comments to verbal conversations - where there isn't a written trail of what you've said to bite you down the road.
  2. Vulgar or dirty "joke" nicknames - While some edgy humor between friends isn't a big deal, a third party might see the nickname and get the wrong impression. It would be easy for an unknowing bystander to take the nickname out of context or just get offended. Even though getting a text message from "S#!thead" is funny to you, it probably isn't a good idea in the grand scheme and it may even get you in trouble at work or in other parts of your day.
  3. Brutally Honest Nicknames - I've seen people who have placed adjectives with people's names to describe who the contact is. Things like "Hairy Dave", "Unibrow Sarah", or even "Creepy Guy from Work" may seem far-fetched, but people actually use nicknames like this in their phone. Obvious trouble in the making.
  4. Overly Cute Nicknames - Vomit. If anyone sees that "Snuggle Bug", "Love of My Life" or "Cuddle Bear" is calling you, they'll likely be giving you crap as soon as you hang up. Just don't do it.