“What’s in a name? That which we call a COUNTYFIPS by any other name would still be accurate” ~ Steve Shakespeare (the lesser known, quantitative Shakespeare).
Couldn’t have said it better myself. Though, when you are sharing your variable names with tens of thousands of researchers who really just want their analysis to work you may want to be cautious about changing variable names. This is exactly the reason our (now re-named) COUNTY variable held onto that moniker for so long. And when you do change variable names you better try your hardest to let everyone know, so let’s start with that part.