Tuesday, March 17, 2009


I thought this was a joke at first, maybe an early April Fool's joke, but apparently it's true. Sci Fi Channel is changing it's name to Syfy. Sure, it's pronounced the same but how incredibly stupid is it to spend millions changing the logo to this?

Plans call for Sci Fi and its companion Web site (scifi.com) to morph into the oddly spelled Syfy — pronounced the same as “Sci Fi” — on July 7. The new name will be accompanied by the slogan “Imagine Greater,” which replaces a logo featuring a stylized version of Saturn.

The tweaking of the Sci Fi name, introduced in 1992, is part of a rebranding campaign that seeks to distinguish the channel and its programming from cable competitors — 75 of which are also measured by the Nielsen ratings service.

The Syfy name is to be introduced on Monday to advertisers and agencies by executives of Sci Fi, part of the NBC Universal Cable Entertainment division of NBC Universal, a unit of General Electric.

The name will be revealed at an upfront presentation, when networks try to win commitments by advertisers to blocks of commercial time before the start of the next TV season. Cable channels will spend this month and next making upfront presentations; the broadcast networks will follow in April and May.

One big advantage of the name change, the executives say, is that Sci Fi is vague — so generic, in fact, that it could not be trademarked. Syfy, with its unusual spelling, can be, which is also why diapers are called Luvs, an online video Web site is called Joost and a toothpaste is called Gleem.

“We couldn’t own Sci Fi; it’s a genre,” said Bonnie Hammer, the former president of Sci Fi who became the president of NBC Universal Cable Entertainment and Universal Cable Productions. “But we can own Syfy.”

Another benefit of the new name is that it is not “throwing the baby away with the bath water,” she added, because it is similar enough to the Sci Fi brand to convey continuity to “the fan-boys and -girls who love the genre.”

Ms. Hammer and her successor as Sci Fi president, Dave Howe, said they had sat through many meetings over the years at which a name change was debated.

The principal reason the idea kept coming up, Mr. Howe said, was a belief “the Sci Fi name is limiting.”

“If you ask people their default perceptions of Sci Fi, they list space, aliens and the future,” he added. “That didn’t capture the full landscape of fantasy entertainment: the paranormal, the supernatural, action and adventure, superheroes.”

That became more important as Sci Fi expanded its program offerings into those realms, Mr. Howe said, with series like “Destination Truth” and “Ghost Hunters.”
And don't forget wrestling. The Sci Fi channel added wrestling along with it's other "program offerings" which did't fit in either.

Not that I watch the Sci Fi Channel since Battlestar Galactica jumped the shark a long time ago. Now it looks like the entire network has jumped the shark.

Click here to read the entire article.


Anonymous said...

wow! What an amazing waste of money. I think the syfy channel should return some of my cable fees. Should be about a dollar for that channel. Anyway, why??? Are they trying to reduce their name size so that it is easier to text? Lovely show of wasting money in an economic slump. I think they may be owned by AIG.

Anonymous said...

And yet they've got you writting about the change... Jon Stewart talking about it on Daily show.

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