[Moved from "Can a holder of a DBA be called Doctor"] Ted, while I'd agree with you that ignorance is playing a role ... I don't think it is as simple as being unaware of the Latin derivation. "Rabbi" and "sensei" both mean teacher as well. People aren't clamoring to claim those titles! Yes, it is unfortunate that many people aren't as aware of the world around them as perhaps they should be. However, I do not think it fair to blame the general public about ignorance about doctor not automatically meaning "physician." I'm a psychologist, having a PhD in clinical psychology which is the minimum requirement to use the title "psychologist" in any of the 50 states. I have to be careful in a medical setting to make sure that my patients are aware that I am not an MD/physician. Now, put a physical therapist, audiologist, pharmacist and nurse (none of whom need a doctorate to practice but now can earn one) alongside a psychologist and a physician at a patient's bedside. Only the latter two clinicians must have earned a doctoral degree to practice. Everyone there is entitled to be called "doctor." You don't see that as having the potential of inspiring serious confusion for the patient? Finally, my question is not about who "gets" to be called "doctor." I've said several times that if you earn a doctorate you earn the title. My concern is, and always has been, why have professions which never needed a doctorate to enter the profession now encouraging it? Did, for example, physical therapy get so complicated in the past few years that now a bachelor's degree is insufficient preparation for clinical practice? I recently received an appointment to a respected SLAC. They have ONE doctoral program ... DPT - doctor of physical therapy. Why? Ultimately, one facet of this discussion that has not been addressed is the reality that universities are businesses. There may be no demonstrable benefit for many of these new doctorates. But if the university can sell it, and students buy it, voila ... new profit stream for the university. However, the student seeking the "prestige" of the doctorate often discovers that after investing significant time/effort/money into acquiring the degree, s/he earns no more, has no more clinical authority, and has now a significant student loan debt to repay. Full disclosure -- I needed a doctorate to become a psychologist. However, Master's level clinicians (e.g. social workers, mental health counselors, nurse practitioners) have done such a good job convincing insurers that they -- with a fraction of the education of a psychologist -- can provide practically the same services as a psychologist, for less money too! For those heaping venom on me for being "disrespectful" of other professions, as a PhD psychologist I question my own decision to pursue the doctorate when I see mid-level practitioners making just about as much as I do, not being questioned when they, yes, misuse psychological diagnostic assessment tools, and having a fraction of the educational debt I do. This is not just about ignorance and ego. It is about needlessly saddling naively prestige seeking professionals with debt to earn credentials of dubious validity or value.