BBC News report, the French have tried to rename the @ symbol
Controversy has erupted in France after the linguistic authorities gave the @ character a name no French email user has ever heard of. Until now, the French have had a choice between "arobase", a popular word derived from the Spanish, and - for the anglophile - "at". But the General Commission for Terminology and Neologisms - the government body charged with coining new French words - has decided that the proper word should be "arrobe".
The @ sign has been variously translated around the world. The Spanish say "arroba", the Germans "at". Among the more colourful translations are the Czech zavinac (pickled herring), Russia's sobachka (little dog), Italy's Chiocciola (small snail) and the Hebrew strudel (an Austrian cake).
Small snail I can understand, and arobase sounds suitably incomprehensible, but pickled herring?