If you were in charge of rebranding the Science Channel, what would you call the new network? The programming is the same, just an improved name.
TestTubeTV? The Hypothesis Network? WisdomNet? E=MC2? The Methodical Study of the Material World Channel?
This morning the network announced its name is changing to … Science. They’re just dropping “Channel” (that’s the new logo, to the right). I know, a bit anti-climactic. One pictures Justin Timberlake in The Social Network advising the Science Channel’s executives: “Just ‘Science,’ it’s cleaner.” And it’s not as problematic to use in a sentence as History, which rings awkward ever since dropping “Channel.”
Still, Science Channel wasn’t begging for a name change. But you know what is? FX. The original idea was “Fox extended,” but the channel no longer airs Fox broadcast castoffs and the closest verbal association is “effects” which makes no sense. Also:
TLC. It was The Learning Channel, then it was shortened when its programming evolved from educational content to the Crazy Moms Channel (CMC!). AMC (formerly American Movie Classics) and TBS (formerly Turner Broadcasting System) and, of course, MTV (formerly standing for Music Television) and VH1 (Video Hits 1) also fall into this category.
Also, Logo. The name for this gay-themed channel is supposed to be about personal identity, but to me it’s always sounded like a fashion network.
Reelz. It sounds like somebody wanted to buy a URL for a new Website and “Reels.com” was already taken and this is what GoDaddy suggested instead. Same with Starz though, for some reason, that “z” doesn’t stick out as much.
The names of the women’s channels aren’t great either. Lifetime is a classic brand and isn’t going anywhere, but it has sort of an aging nostalgic rocking-chair ring to it. Then there’s WEtv (awkward) and Oxygen (sounds like, hey, a Science Channel).
MSNBC. Gah. There’s been talk of changing this for other reasons. But for me, it sounds like NBC caught a degenerative disease.
Here’s some names I love: Food Network. There you go. You know exactly what you’re getting. Food. Network. Same goes for: Travel Channel. Comedy Central. Discovery Channel. Animal Planet. Fox News.
Among the acronyms, even after all these years, HBO still has a perfect name — Home Box Office, programming that’s somewhere between standard TV and what you get in theaters (a project like Game of Thrones is a perfect example).
What about you? Which network names do you love or hate?