rihanna red carpet
photo: Getty Images

Rihanna. Ree-ah-na. Ree-ann-a. 

Those of us who have American accents are likely pronouncing the pop singer's name the exact same way, and have been doing so since she made her mainstream music debut all the way back in 2005.

But it turns out that almost 15 years after we've watched Rih drop chart-topping albums, create a beauty brand, launch a lingerie line, and even design her own luxury clothing, we've done her the greatest disservice. We've been saying her name wrong the entire freaking time.

America as a whole is really messed up right now, but the way we've been mistreating Rihanna is the MOST unacceptable.

rihanna eyeliner
photo: Getty Images

She's more than a decade into a massively successful career, and apparently we never even bothered to get the pronunciation of her name right. And coming from a person whose name gets butchered in every possible way, this is truly outrageous. She's famous, for God's sake.

Yeah, we've been saying "Rihanna" wrong this whole time. Just watch this recent video of her introducing herself.

Rih recently appeared on the British Vogue Twitter account while at a promotional event for her upcoming luxury clothing launch, and she clearly pronounces her name with a short A sound rather than a long one. In other terms, she pronounces it "Ree-ann-a" rather than "Ree-ah-na."

And now Twitter's in a panic about the fact that we've been doing Rihanna so dirty for so long.

This clip of Rihanna introducing herself the same way she did in the British Vogue video has almost 3,000 replies, most of which go something along the lines of, "UM, WHAT? Since when?" And frankly we're in agreement there.

Think about it. "Pon De Replay" came out on May 24, 2005.

One year from now will mark the 15-year anniversary of the very moment Rihanna became a national sensation. That means we've been incorrectly pronouncing her name for more than a decade. Almost 15 years. We truly are the worst.

And to make matters worse, here's a clip of Rihanna clarifying the pronunciation all the way back in 2012. 

Y'all! She warned us! Seven whole years ago! We didn't listen at all, clearly. Better start practicing your long A sounds: Ree-ann-a, Ree-ann-a, Ree-ann-a. Ugh.

Meanwhile, British people are just sitting there like, "We been knew."

The tweet that started the panic has dozens upon dozens of responses from non-American people who are rather confused as to why we even think Rihanna's name is pronounced that way. There are reasons, we promise!

But, uh... it's not entirely our fault we've been saying it wrong.

On top of the fact that broadcasters and video news outlets have also been pronouncing the name wrong since day one, even RiRi herself has slipped before. Listen to this short clip from the N.E.R.D. song "Lemon" and tell me her name drop doesn't sounds like "Ree-ah-na."

Some Yanks know how to pronounce it right but just don't want to.

And that's fair. Once you start saying something one way and do it for long enough, it's pretty impossible to train yourself out of it. Clearly Rihanna's name is one of those things. Like "caramel" or "route" or "envelope."

And as it turns out, people are pretty split down the middle about how they say Rihanna's name.

This yet-to-be-concluded Twitter poll from the user who started this argument shows that the divide between people who say "Re-ann-a" and "Re-ah-na," is almost 50-50. 

Frankly, we're shocked that Badgal is even putting up with this nonsense.

photo: LE 360

It doesn't seem like Badgal to put up with people disrespecting her in any way, shape, or form. But hey, she's got several million-dollar industries floating around. She's likely got better things to worry about than the public slightly mispronouncing her name.