WaMu's "Whoo-Hoo": Not "Woo-Hoo" As That's Homer Simpson


Washington Mutual has started a new billboard campaign (see images). "Whoo-hoo!" has folks in its hometown of Seattle asking "Whoo-what?" "Whoo-why?"

Even aside from the question of what it means ("You're upside down in your mortgage? Whoo-hoo!" "Our stock dove nearly 10 percent yesterday? Whoo-hoo!"), many bloggers have told the Seattle P.I. that it's spelled wrong. It should be "Woo-hoo!"

Homer Simpson
Homer Simpson

Turns out the bank didn't want to end up with trademark issues. "Woo-hoo!" belongs to Homer Simpson. By adding an "H" (as in Homer?) WaMu gets around that.

"We didn't want something that somebody else is using," a bank spokeswoman told the paper. Oh. And, in fact, the P.I. says "Whoo-hoo!" has been trademarked by WaMu.

Tim Bueneman of McAdams Wright Ragen says the billboards have him scratching his head. His Seattle-based firm has no rating on the bank's stock, though its cheaper price is starting to look interesting.

But do you really want to put your money in a bank that reminds you of Homer Simpson? Doh!

Questions? Comments? Funny Stories? Email funnybusiness@cnbc.com