Or should it be rekt, as the kids spell it?
OK, that’s probably not what these companies had in mind when they chose their names. (Keep reading for alternate theories.) Still, it’s what I can’t help thinking every time I pass one of their billboards or bus advertisements, narrowly avoiding a wreck as I pause to ponder.
It takes courage, or obliviousness, or perhaps just stubbornness, to give your company a name that is likely to be parodied as “Hi, Rectum!”
And yet here we are. Bold move, Hirect!
Hirect, which calls itself, shorthand-style, “1st hiring app for founders,” was founded in 2021 in San Francisco. I’ll be generous and assume the name is a portmanteau of hire and direct, or maybe hire and correct. Or hire and erect. (Then again, it could be hire and rectum, haha.* That’s the trouble with portmanteaus: sometimes you just don’t know!) Please don’t confuse this Hirect with Hind Rectifiers, the current owner of Hirect.com. (Hind Rectifiers. Say it with me: What were they thinking?) The hiring app can be found at HirectApp.com. Hind Rectifiers, founded in 1958 and based in Mumbai, manufactures silicon diodes, battery chargers, and, well, rectifiers.
The other -rect I’ve been spotting around town is Deliverect, which was founded in 2018 and is based in Ghent, Belgium. Deliverect makes software that allows restaurants to integrate their online orders and “improve operational flow,” functions that have grown in importance during the Covid pandemic. I’m guessing they smooshed together deliver and direct (or, you know, correct! or erect!) and hoped it wouldn’t look like a train wreck. (Or a proctology service.) It’s not as transparently bad as Hirect, but it’s not exactly inspired.
(I should note here that Deliverect has been hoovering up investors’ money—$150 million in its most recent funding round, bringing the company’s valuation to more than $1.4 billion. So they’re doing something correctly.)
Since you’ve stuck with me this long, and because my head is clearly up my ass, here’s your 15-second insight into rectum: Yes, it’s related to those other -rect words; the root means “straight,” as in “rectangle.” The rectum is literally the straight intestine, “in contrast to the convolution of the rest of the bowels,” as the Online Etymology Dictionary puts it.
* That would make Hirect a literal #shitmanteau.