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I AM A HATER presents: Syfy Channel? SYFY CHANNEL??? NBC/Universal… you, sirs, have crossed the line! by COOP

Posted on July 7th, 2009
Posted on July 7th, 2009


(Sort-of Disclaimer: “I Am A Hater” contributors say mean things… but in a constructive way. They try to elicit free thinking, discussion or change from slamming something that infuriates, baffles or frustrates them. I’m sure you’ve often thought of doing the same. Read the rant and decide for yourself…)

So I turn on the tube today and as I strolled through the Direct TV channels, I noticed that the “Sci-fi” channel has been changed to the “Syfy” channel.  The new tagline:  “Imagine Greater.”

Nuts.

Now, I knew this was coming.  When I first heard about it I just kinda went “Pttthhhhfff!!!” and shook my head in annoyance, but nothing prepared me for the rage I felt when I actually saw the logo newly displayed on the screen. 

Big deal, you say?  BIG DEAL???  You’ve got a lot of nerve, mister.  Some of you may not understand the greater picture to this problem so I feel it’s my duty to inform you…  The problem here is threefold:

1. Bureaucracy

2. Waste

3. Lack of Vision


In a corporate entity like NBC/Universal, bureaucracy and waste are commonplace.  With the weakened economy and massive staff cuts, administrators are scrambling and desperately trying to justify their positions and stay employed.  I worked in the Los Angeles public school system and I learned first hand what administrators do when they are afraid for their jobs…  They invent newfangled, useless campaigns and mandate that the entire organization buy into it and implement it with very little assurance of quality control.  These campaigns also eradicate programs that were working perfectly and others that weren’t given enough of a chance to see if they would work.

Yes, folks.  This is how junk is created.  Useless junk that wastes money and effort, all to save the jobs of administrators that should’ve probably been fired to save the organization money that they could have used to employ the truly creative people. 

“Syfy” is a symptom of not only this bureaucracy and waste but also misguided (if not a lack of) vision.  It’s like the bozo cable execs in those Direct TV commercials desperately trying to come up with a way to compete but failing miserably. 

However, in the case of the Sci-fi Channel, it’s also success that’s driving their need to change.  The entity is expanding into publications, games and anything they can get their hands on and for that I say “bravo.”  But like many companies do when they taste a little success, they get cocky and bite the many hands that feed them. 

You want some proof of this?  Go read this article in TVWeek that explains the change to “Syfy” and soak in the meaningless buzzwords and hilariously insincere rhetoric of those clueless execs as they attempt to justify this disrespectful alteration.

To the exec (Dave Howe, maybe?)/team of execs that came up with this lame excuse for an improvement…

By perverting the term “sci-fi” into some cute little riff on the word to further your well-meaning “umbrella brand” agenda, you risk insulting and further alienating and the fans of the genre and your original programming.  You claim that many people don’t like sci-fi because it’s associated with “geek?”  You think just because you came up with some wannabe hip way to spell it (based on the way kids text/spell the term?) that it will now attract women aged 13-50?  Try again.  It’s still pronounced “sci-fi.”  You just wasted time and money on a completely inept campaign because you pissed off what the above article called the “dysfunctional” and “antisocial” geeks AND you didn’t fool the mainstream demographic. Congrats also for further mutilating the English language by embracing text language.  Something I battled against for 5 years as an English teacher. 

You’re fired geniuses.

Furthermore, I challenge you to pistols at dawn.  As you can see from this pic, I do a lot of shooting…

I will never like the “Syfy” moniker, yet I will continue to watch the channel and their shows.  I sincerely hope that this move doesn’t hurt your quality or your ratings, especially since you probably blew a mint to create and promote Syfy.  As for us geeks, you’re lucky the change fell on Michael Jackson’s memorial day, when many of the geeks of the world are somewhat preoccupied (except for me… I completely lost respect for the guy once he turned into a raging freak).  

-I am Coop and I am a HATER.

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