To answer the question ((What is your name?))


There is this problem I came up with in one of my classes.

How common is it to answer the question “What's your name?" with

It's ________.

Instead of

My name's ________.

I would appreciate knowing if native speakers find both forms of answer natural.


Posted 2016-12-25T04:11:12.700

Reputation: 81

Question was closed 2016-12-25T20:07:41.867

2You can just say the name on its own. . "David". – Khan – 2016-12-25T06:55:34.573

I agree with Khan. My response would probably be either "Crystal" by itself or "My name is Crystal". Saying "it's" is fine too, of course :-) – snailplane – 2016-12-27T04:19:29.520



There's always going to be a problem about asking "how common" something is in speech. It depends on a person's dialect and the area where they live, it depends on the situation, and it depends on personality. Both forms, cited by the OP, are common though.

Speaker A: Hello, what's your name?

  • Marilou
  • It's Marilou
  • Hi, I'm Marilou.
  • My name's Marilou

The phrase My name is Marilou has a quite formal tone, the only time I've used it was in presentations, or when I had to teach about introducing yourself in English.

This American English video, which was made by a teacher called Rachel, is really good. It also explains which syllables should be stressed in the phrase. my NAME's MArilou

Some non-native speakers don’t want to use contractions because they don’t think it’s clear enough, but we really do want to use the contraction “I’m”, and not “I am” because it can be much quicker, I’m, which puts the emphasis on the name, the most important part. This will also help smooth out your speech.

Mari-Lou A

Posted 2016-12-25T04:11:12.700

Reputation: 19 962

+1 for pointing out that both answers are viable, but the longer one has a more formal ring to it. More often than not, which form I’d use hinges on how formal I want to be. – J.R. – 2016-12-25T08:00:57.890


In everyday conversation, I would say "It's Mick," since everyone knows me by that name. I would never say "My name is Mick." If I had to introduce myself [very] formally, I would use my surname, as in the most famous introduction of all:

My name is Bond, James Bond.


Posted 2016-12-25T04:11:12.700

Reputation: 6 424

1In the US we'd be more likely to introduce ourselves by our first name, then surname if necessary. "My name is James. James Bond". Doesn't quite have the same ring to it, though ... – Andrew – 2016-12-25T05:23:16.443

@Andrew Good point. I would do that too, if I were meeting someone socially and they wanted to know my surname. – Mick – 2016-12-25T05:28:47.423


@Andrew Reminds me of James James Morrison Morrison Weatherby George Dupree.

– Mick – 2016-12-25T05:36:16.907


It's a very informal way to answer, like if someone you think is attracted to you asks you

What is your name?
It's David.

If there's a question of what you might be called, for example your name is Jonathan but you would rather be called Jon, you could say

My name is Jon (not Jonathan).
I use the name Jon.
Most people call me Jon.
Please call me Jon.


Posted 2016-12-25T04:11:12.700

Reputation: 63 575


To add to the other answers, with regard to nicknames or common abbreviations of first names:

Once they know my name, people often ask me, "Do you go by Andrew or Andy?" To which I reply, "I'm an Andrew. I'm also not a Drew." Similarly, someone might say "It's Bob not Robert," or, "I'm actually Eustacia but please just call me Stacy."


Posted 2016-12-25T04:11:12.700

Reputation: 85 521