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Huh? News of the Week: Sci Fi Becomes Syfy

By March 18, 2009

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This name is about to become part of your life. Brace yourself.
© Sci Fi Channel
The biggest news coming out of the Sci Fi Channel's upfronts on Monday was that, come this summer, there will no longer be a Sci Fi Channel.

Apparently the honchos at Sci Fi, which is owned by NBC Universal, are concerned that "sci fi" is too geeky a term, associated with social misfits who like to watch stuff no one else gets, like Battlestar Galactica. The name, they, thought, might be holding them back. So they're changing the name to "Syfy."

Huh? Is this a joke? Apparently not. They even have a new, nonsensical slogan: "Imagine greater." What does that mean? It's as if they took the Mac slogan, "Think different," and put it through the Brundlefly machine.

"The name Sci Fi has been associated with geeks and dysfunctional, antisocial boys in their basements with video games and stuff like that, as opposed to the general public and the female audience in particular," said TV historian Tim Brooks, who helped launch Sci Fi Channel when he worked at USA Network (quoted in TV Week). The female audience is a big deal: although Sci Fi shows high-testosterone stuff like ECW wrestling, the female-viewership numbers for shows like Ghost Hunters have been very promising. But am I alone in feeling a little insulted by this? Are science fiction fans really just adenoidal nerds? Is that what NBC Universal thinks of us?

Despite the fact that "syfy" sounds like the domain name you reluctantly choose if "scifi.com" is already taken, executives at the 16-year-old cable network enthused about the idea, saying it will open up all new vistas and possibilities.

"While continuing to embrace our legacy and our core audience, we needed to cultivate a distinct point of view with a name that we could own that invites more people in and reflects our broader range of programming," said Sci Fi President Dave Howe. "Syfy allows us to build on our 16-year heritage of success with a new brand built on the power that fuels our genre: the Imagination. Syfy ushers in a new era of unlimited imagination, exceptional experiences and greater entertainment that paves the way for us to truly become a global lifestyle brand."

Got that? In other words, the real problem is that "sci fi" is a generic term, and so Sci Fi Channel is sort of like Drama Channel. Changing the name to Syfy allows them to brand their content more specifically, so that their scripted entertainment and reality-show properties will be tied to a much more discrete corporate and marketing entity. In particular, Syfy is easier to protect as a trademark than the generic term "Sci Fi."

They ran through 300 or so possibilities before landing on Syfy. "When we tested this new name, the thing that we got back from our 18-to-34 techno-savvy crowd, which is quite a lot of our audience, is actually this is how you'd text it," Howe said. "It made us feel much cooler, much more cutting-edge, much more hip, which was kind of bang-on what we wanted to achieve communication-wise."

Oh, and if you were wondering why Syfy Portal recently changed its name to the more cumbersome Airlock Alpha, this is the answer: NBCU bought the brand from them.

The "Syfy" concept will launch on air and on-line July 7th, in tandem with the premiere of Warehouse 13 and the return of Eureka, and scifi.com will assume the URL syfy.com at that time. Between now and then the network will be engaged in an all-out campaign to convince people this isn't the dumbest marketing idea since New Coke.


March 18, 2009 at 8:40 am
(1) rdavis says:

No, SyFy sounds like a wireless service.

It’s a shame that in a moment when science fiction is gaining more mainstream legitimacy, genre is perhaps getting a bit of hegemony, that we get this. And it is just a dorky name.

March 18, 2009 at 9:47 am
(2) Carole says:

It really makes sense for scifi to become syfy since they really have very little science fiction on the station and have filled it with mindless drivel like ghost hunters, wrestling, and not so scarry horror shows. BTW, I am a 66 year old woman who is a psychotherapist. I have watched real scifi and have read that genre all of my life. I have always wondered why people think of scifi fans as those boys in their basements. Scifi always has attracted an educated audience.

March 18, 2009 at 10:00 am
(3) Cemar says:

I’m a 36-year-old woman who watches the Sci Fi Channel when they have things on that I like because it’s a genre I enjoy… I don’t know what the heck SyFy is–it seems like something that will not draw new people in (because they won’t know what it is) but will alienate fans of the genre by implying that somehow it’s embarrassing to be associated with it. How much did they blow on this “brand” change? I find this whole thing inexplicably rankling.

It looks as if the pronunciation will still be the same, so how will this “fool” anyone into thinking they’re not watching the science fiction channel? And while we’re at it, REALLY does anyone think, “Well, there’s a show I’d like to watch, but I wouldn’t be caught dead on the Sci Fi Channel…wait, it’s SyFy? Well, then, OF COURSE I’ll watch.”

If Lifetime became Laiftyme, would I be more likely to watch it? Nope. Not unless it started broadcasting a show I wanted to watch, at which point I wouldn’t care what channel it was on.

March 18, 2009 at 10:20 am
(4) Carrie says:

I am a 40 year old female who loves reading Science Fiction and started watching the Sci Fi Channel over a year ago after getting hooked on Stargate Atlantis. Of course, they canceled that show, so I’m disgusted with them now whether they change the name to SyFy or not.

March 18, 2009 at 11:08 am
(5) Paula Hillman says:

I will forever be “sci-fi’ and thats that!!!!! STUPID IDEA syfy

March 18, 2009 at 11:10 am
(6) sog14 says:

This makes no sense whatsoever and is more than a little insulting. Not to mention that it furthers the dumbing down of America in promoting the incorrect English in the way people text. Writing is a lost art already, and to promote a text-style format is just not right for a channel that is home to so much creativity and great writing (ie, the aforementioned Battlestar Gallactica).

March 18, 2009 at 1:44 pm
(7) jolleybird says:

Syfy? Rhymes with iffy. Something I’m unsure of, and probably want nothing to do with anything iffy. I am a 52 year old female who started reading sci fi in elementry school when an enlightened teacher read “A Wrinkle in Time” to the class. Syfy? Get a brain. Sci fi at least made sense.

March 18, 2009 at 2:51 pm
(8) Patricia says:

I’m a 61 year old female who loves the sci fi programming on SciFi, like the Stargate programs and Eureka and BSG. I could care less about wrestling (what’s sci fi about that?)and Ghost Hunters is boring. It sounds to me like they are trying to open up to more non sci fi shows. In other words to be just another ordinary channel with reruns of Seinfeld and infomercials etc.. I guess niche marketing is not working out for them. Why don’t they call it the muggle channel?

March 18, 2009 at 4:26 pm
(9) Judith Marks says:

“I am woman hear me roar.” At 69 years old, I know what I like and it’s SciFi, not Siffy. Like some of the other women, I don’t get into wrestling or ghost either….

March 18, 2009 at 4:31 pm
(10) Scifigal says:

53 year old female who loves scifi. Don’t get that channel as I am in Canada. I see no need to change the channel. I think maybe they need to rethink who actually likes scifi. They just might surprise themselves in who actually reads and watches.

March 18, 2009 at 5:40 pm
(11) Kimminator says:

45 year old female here. I think that this “Syfy” thing is insulting and short-sighted. I agree with several previous comments in that I am not even remotely interested in wrestling and Ghost Hunters utterly bores and annoys me. I started my interest in SciFi with the ‘classics’ like Asimov, Heinlein, Bradbury, Wells, Sturgeon, and Verne. SciFi is short for Science Fiction – what is SyFy about? What is it supposed to mean/be/represent?

To paraphrase another comment: I don’t care what the channel is CALLED – I’m there for its CONTENT!

Who cares about trendy packaging if the content isn’t good? Does this ‘dumbing-down’ of the name mean that future programming is going to be treated in the same manner?

The original thing that drew me (and many friends and family-members) to the SciFi Channel was that it set out to show what appealed to people who liked Science Fiction. So, what is it going to become? This trend away from its origins has evident for a while now; how many interesting new shows have been axed in favor of…well, wrestling and ghost-hunter, to bring up ones that were already mentioned? Too many.

I really don’t approve and predict shrinking viewership as a result.

March 18, 2009 at 6:07 pm
(12) Elyse says:

The biggest problem isn’t the name change, but the underlying reason why (and I’m not talking branding). It’s broadening what they’ll air. After reading one quote in which it said “as well as science fiction” after mentioning adventure adventure and drama, well, might as well just get Netflix and rent the movies – which won’t be cut to shreds. SciFi, or SKiffy as it will always be to me, has been dwindling in quality scifi. Friends tell me to watch BBC America if I want scifi (if only I got that channel!)

However, the name change has provided much amusement with the news stories and caustic tweets that are everywhere ;)

March 18, 2009 at 11:16 pm
(13) Starrpoint says:

You have got to be kidding.

I know that the Powers that Be associate it with geeky boys, but come on people. Most of the Sci Fi fans I know are well educated, professional people in the 40′s, 50′s and 60′s, me included. I have never been a geeky boy, being of the female Persuasion, and in my late 50′s.

Maybe that is why the channel does not seem to be able to make anything but giant snake movies.

This does not bod well.

March 18, 2009 at 11:24 pm
(14) callixa says:

The name change doesn’t bother me as much, but I found the reason for the change to be silly. I was really shocked, too, because it’s like they’re trying to change where they came from. I don’t think I’ll have much of a problem with the change unless they bring more content on the channel that has nothing to do with the genre. It’s pretty broad, they don’t have to work that hard to find something that fits in the spectrum of speculative fiction.

I’m a 21 year old *female* scifi writer, and I love watching the channel except for all that non-sf/f/h material they constantly air. The thing that really irks me is that typical 18-34 male demographic people always talk about. Like women don’t watch tv. That’s bull. I’ve found that most of the stuff aimed at the male demographic really appeals to me because the content is interesting not because of my gender.

March 18, 2009 at 11:56 pm
(15) MOTHERPANN says:

I agree, as a 57 yr old female, I have loved sci fi always, I am so tired of hearing that the media thinks that only geeks/men 18-34 watch television. I have several friends in my age group that watched shows that were suppose to be for the young such as Buffy, Angel, Sabrina, Kyle XY, Supernatural, SG1 & Atlantis, All Star Trek, BSG, Dr Who, etc. and as you can see all but one of them is
left to view.

Well at least I can’t complain, anymore, that why is a SCI FI channel putting on Wrestling, Horror and Gore Movies or other shows that are fantasy and not science fiction.

If I want good sci fi, I’m turning to the History channel and watch their shows on UFO (lol)

March 19, 2009 at 6:14 am
(16) Andrew Zimmerman Jones - Physics Guide says:

This is absurd. They will lose their core audience in the hope of expanding into a new, broader audience … but the broader audience just won’t be there. I don’t know of a single person who would like Battlestar Galactica or Eureka or any StarGate show, and would be turned off by the name SciFi. I began watching the show precisely because of the name – it was clear that it would have the sort of programming I was interested in, just as the History Channel or Biography Channel make it clear sort of shows (on average) they’ll be running. Now, instead of the channel that defines a major genre, they’ve become a brand, with no defining trait that makes them distinct from any other channel.

March 19, 2009 at 1:13 pm
(17) Char says:

I am 57 and have been a sci-fi/fantasy fan or nut since my teens. I am a WOMAN Who is the moron that think only young males like the genre? I will refrain from making comments about young males, or males in general.

Has the idoicy in the Financial world invaded Sci-Fi? It sure sounds like it. No wonder NBC (parent company) is at the bottom of the ratings race.

Instead of changing the name of the channel, why don’t we get the crap that is not sci-fi OFF it. Stuff like wrestling, which never made sence and Ghost Hunters, which I think is beyond stupid and totally faked

I hope they don’t foul up what good programing they do have. I will watch what appeals to me, which isn’t wrestling.

My biggest worry—–they are going to ruin the channel

March 19, 2009 at 5:25 pm
(18) PasadenaDave says:

SyFy – ho, hum. If they continue to fill their airtime with dribble like Ghosthunters and monster fare, they’ll have a short life. There are SO many Positive and Entertaining GOOD Science Fiction themes out there.. SciFi or SyFy has potential, but give us quality entertainment with a science bent, get rid of the monster crud (and Ghostnumbing junk.)

Years ago there was a pilot wherein a fellow snuck into a computer lab, and was running a 1/2″ computer tape PROGRAMMING HIMSELF – was discovered, ran off partly unfinished, and was followed to Mt Ararat (bits and pieces of sci-fi magic stuff here) wherein it was determined that he was the latest in a series of hundreds of “Noah” creatures here to help mankind do good – and needed a computer type to help him finish his programming.. Good show, died on the vine. Hey, SyFi Channel – Positive and Entertaining.. get the message?

March 19, 2009 at 5:32 pm
(19) PasadenaDave says:

May have been a “Moses” type fellow, too, long ago.. No idea how the many “Moses” husks in the distant chamber shadows were originally programmed, but hey, there is promise here, especially since the creature, out for the good of humanity, has some “magic” (advanced science) abilities.
Quite enjoyable. PS – my family doesn’t watch the super alligators, snakes, or Ghosthunters. hint, hint.. But we watched every episode of BSG, DS9, Firefly, Moonlight etc.. Positive Entertainment..

Hello, anybody home…?

March 19, 2009 at 10:54 pm
(20) ryan k says:

I want to know who in world would text “syfy” ? its only 1 letter shorter. they’ll forever be called siffy (at least by me). all their viewers are leaving after bsg ends anyway.

i bet they start showing ‘reaper’, ‘supernatural’, ‘smallville’ or ‘psych’ reruns because they’re “syfy” (as apposed to sci fi)

March 19, 2009 at 11:12 pm
(21) feedingtimeatthezoo says:

Is this to rhyme with words like ‘sniffy’…?

What an utterly idiotic idea! As a 47 year old, middle class mother and professional, not to mention mad, life-long science fiction fan, and one of many such I know, I AM part of the ‘sci-fi’ demographic!

Telephone sanitisers, and marketing execs….”First up against the wall when the revolution comes…”

March 19, 2009 at 11:22 pm
(22) NotMyRealName says:

I love the new name. SyFy. It’s sexy and brilliant and…

…okay, I’m just lying. It’s stupid and alienating (but not in the good sense of aliens). And, like some others, I hear it as “siffy” What’s that? Maybe the name of a rabbit. If you hated the rabbit.

Like others, the name doesn’t bother me as much as the poor content. I would rather watch Ghostbusters repeats over and over than Ghost Hunters. Heck, I’d rather watch a Dustbuster than Ghost Hunters.

And while I’m no longer 18, I work with 18 year olds and guess what? They know it sucks, too.

March 20, 2009 at 12:06 am
(23) Bilbo says:

Yes, Very simply; “SyFy” is STUPID!!!!!!!!

March 20, 2009 at 7:12 pm
(24) Robert L. says:

good lord, this is true? Unless they are trying to drum up PR for their station, this is the most stupid idea I’ve heard in a long time.

First they destroy the programming with all the garbage now they change the name…well, sort of.

Why not take the money it will take to make this change and produce some more quality shows like Battlestar Galactica?

March 21, 2009 at 10:22 pm
(25) Kristan Harsh says:

I hope the pencil necks at (the soon-to-be) “SyFy” are *really* looking at these responses here and noting the interesting demographics that are posting. These are *women*, and it appears they’ve been around the SCI FI block a few times, boys. I’m a 60 year old male and have followed SCI FI since pre-teen. No, it is *not* my Life, but is *is* a significant contributor to the “What If” thinking and considering I do, in the Universal sense. [Battlestar Galactica was a most excellent example of the type of sci fi that grabs my focused attention, and on many different levels.] The execs at the stb “SyFy” are missing some very important points that have been voiced here by others than myself. Someone posting here compared this name change proposal to Coca Cola’s “New Coke” attempt of some years back. Seen any New Coke around lately? Name recognition *is* an important element in corporate and advertising success–no argument there— but changing an established, iconic name can be a very slippery slope. And contemplating changing a shift in “genre” name recognition, especially to cater to a generation because “this is the way it would be *texted*” is about as ludicrous a reason as you can grab at to justify such a risky move. Presumedly, the name change is to (bottom line) grab more people into being regular watchers of the channel. Guys, you do this with QUALITY shows, QUALITY concepts that are well developed and properly marketed to whet the interest and imagination of the target audience; not a slick, techno-name that looks good when it’s texted. I strongly suggest that those in the (stb) “SyFy” Puzzle Palace rethink what they are proposing to do and do alittle more polling, a little more demographic sampling and marketing research before they blunder into an arena where making a major (and predictable) mistake in attempting better name recognition and then trying to find a Plan B for damage control could vastly compound a problem that need never had been one in the first place.

March 23, 2009 at 12:50 am
(26) shadanda says:

Pleeease!,OMG. I am a 43 year old Wo-man I have been reading Sci-Fi and Fantasy since I was 13 years old. I started watching the Sci-Fi Channel for its once great and interesting content. And I want to know what kind of moron thinks a small demographic watch Sci-Fi. OK I don’t want to know I’ll just be very disappointed anyway. Obviously they got the wrong marketing research team on this one. NBC you really are screwing up a good channel just for greedy profits. Times are tough sure, How bout a little patience with your viewer audience and if you really want to add a larger audience to the sci-fi channel why not show some really intense clips of your best sci-fi shows on NBC and your other channels you may own because sometimes people watch it cause its good. Sci-Fi is supposed to be about new ideas, possibilities, scientific imagination and a hope of better tomorrow. And by the way I’m a mom with two daughters who also have watched many a show with me, your next Sci-Fi generation isnt going to want to watch ghost hunters or wrestling or some horror show thats Not Sci-FI any more than I am. And they are “growing” in numbers.

March 23, 2009 at 1:38 pm
(27) CuriousPrimate says:

Syfy, Polish slang for an STD. Says it all.

March 25, 2009 at 6:16 pm
(28) conwayod says:

SCIFI has been dying a slow death ever since Gene Roddenberry died!!! It also hasn’t help that a main stream network (NBC) bought it. I’m also a girl you morons. I make a heck of alot more money than some of those veiwers you are trying to bring in at the expense of the loyal old ones. Also you can only show Star Treck NG just so many times. The monsters of the week are getting old too. The silver lining to all this is that my cable bill will get alot cheaper.

March 27, 2009 at 2:45 pm
(29) dedicatedbibliophile says:

As oppose to what the last idiot said, sci-fi (notice how I spell it correctly) has NOT been dying a slow death. I am a fourteen year old female and I can assure everyone that it is not only people over the age of 40 that like sci-fi. I am not the only teen who watches and reads sci-fi. I’m not an un social nerd who hangs around playing playstation (as a matter of fact, I abhor the wretched machine), although I am a little eccentric.
My main complaint is that some arb tv network got to change the name of my favourite genre, without me (the viewer) getting a say in it at all.
I think the name syfy is retarded, amongst other things, which I will not mention as they are impolite.
I am also insulted, and horrified, about the perception of sci-fi fans as being dorks.
I also think that the person writing previously to me (conwayod) is a pretentious prat. She needs someone to stick a pin in her self-inflated ego.

March 28, 2009 at 5:48 pm
(30) ChiefD says:

I agree With both the last comments. The name is the lable I have been using to search for Books, TV, programming, Movies, Serials. who? or more importantly what idiot decides that we a name change at this stage? the network should put the waste of time that is the ECW and all the ghostbusters on their own channels. I wish they would put as much time and effort taking stellar books and making for the SciFi channel, programming We viewers Pay for.

March 28, 2009 at 8:40 pm
(31) save Sci Fi says:

The real identity problem if there is one that keeps a better demographic away from the present Scifi Channel is the identify the channel has received with the crazy big snakes and other mindless “D” grade movies that so much air time is given to showing> Real Science Fiction shows have much less of their air times as the Ghost Hunters, Wrestling and etc. If the folks at NBCU want a better audience put more hours of Science Fiction shows and you will find a loyal audience return and grow for your GOOD programing. All the name changes in the world will not change the reputation the channel has for the poor programing chooses you have made to populate you air. Change that and keep the name you have or do us a favor and disassociate your self form those of us that desire quality programing.

This will spell the end of our channel, It is a very sad day for me. I have been very loyal to watch EVERY program produced for what I believed to be my channel. In the future this channel will just be one of many channels on cable and no longer my main viewing channel. Before long we will no longer look to this channel as our source for Scifi. I believe NBC actually hates the programing on SCIFI and has been looking for a way to remove ALL SciFi programs. No longer will I just watch them to SUPPORT my channel because I no longer have a channel. If they wanted a new channel why not change the name on Sleuth or CHILLER networks and leave the one hope SciFi fans had of consistent programing. Maybe another broadcaster like NewsCorp ( FOX ) will add a real SCIFI Channel they seem to support the programs much better than NBC ever has anyway. NBC may gain folks that hate SCIFI but will lose the core of they viewers. Just a very sad day for me.

The contemp. NBC proves they have for me certainly will make me look elsewhere for something to watch or recommend to others.

My protest is to NEVER watch a LIVE program on ANY “NBC” owned network again. In the future I will record using a DVR and NEVER give them the benefit of having a LIVE viewer. This will KILL ad income and cause the management responsible to be removed and folks that can HEAR fans of their programs will be used to replace these folks.

Bonnie Hammer should go work for Lifetime if she HATES SCIFI fans so much she does not want to be associated with us. The same with USA another channel I have supported in the past, never another LIVE viewed program ever again. The TRUTH is the number of viewers is to small to support a SciFi only channel. Even if all the folks that like Scifi watched at the same time the numbers would not be large enough to make a network happy. BSG never got more than maybe 4 million viewers at most so we can not hope to have a channel devoted to JUST SCIFI. The second problem is the few views of SciFi are so picky that if a program is not EXACTLY what they want they refuse to support it. No support no programs , very simple. When you ad the contempt of network suits to this , the result becomes no network to watch. A program or two might be showing among the two hundred channels on cable at the same time but not enough to support an entire network.

To ad insult to injury Wrestling has viewers everywhere it is on. Spike, USA, Scifi, MyNetworkTv all successful Wrestling programs that sell ads and make money for the networks. Even the Saturday “B” movies average about 1.5 million viewers most Saturday nights and that is not a bad number for a cable channel, especially when you figure the low cost of these low budget movies.

I am personally sickened that SCIFI is very likely going to no longer be a SCIFI channel, it has not been for a long time because of low viewer numbers and maybe the lack of support of so many of us that really do desire SCIFI programs. Frankly I may consider turning my Directv off and save the money it costs every month and just view the two or three programs on my computer (26 inch monitor) even if I have to pay a small per program fee. I have five DVRS and generally take my TV viewing seriously.

April 1, 2009 at 6:03 pm
(32) Glasself says:

Some years ago, I attended a Science Fiction convention in NY. The SciFi Channel sent one of their reps to talk at us (no, not with, at). While she was explaining why “Lexx” was not so bad a show and that their programming was aimed at the 14 yr old boys who watched, I scanned the room. Not a 14 yr old in sight. The SciFi Channel (not syfy, you idiots) has no idea who their audience even is. Or could be, at least. For the record, over 40 & female.

April 12, 2009 at 11:55 pm
(33) scifimom says:

I totally agree that changing the name is ridiculous! I thought it looked like “siffy” even before I read all the quotes. Like many of my “sisters”, I too am middle-age (42) and have enjoyed sci-fi and fantasy since childhood. I grew up on S.T., Lost in Space, Land of the Lost, Space 1999, Orig. BSG, Buck Rogers (campy, but I was a kid!), etc. Why can’t they (TPTB) run some of the old stuff and show the younger generation what “real” sci-fi is? Give the wrestling back to ESPN and put the Ghosthunters on, say, the Discovery channel (in hopes they actually discover a real ghost!). CMT lost me as a viewer when they stopped playing music and started showing home makeovers and the brats in need of nannies. Pleeeeese don’t change the name!!!
Are they hearing us??

June 16, 2009 at 9:45 am
(34) Rich says:

SyFy??? What the F@#$?? I have wondered since the day they first aired wrestling what the heck was going on. Why is a fake/soap-opera sport on my Science Fiction (albeit usually really bad new b-horror shows) channel?? And where did all the really good shows go? Anyone heard of Farscape?? Battlestar G got huge reviews and you are cancelling? All for the trailer park cash cow of a revised roman spectacle. Sure, Ultimate fighting is truely intense – but leave that to HBO or pay-per-view.
I guess I am going to have to just hang out on the BBCA and watch more Primeval and Dr Who – WTF??

June 19, 2009 at 3:32 pm
(35) Sarah says:

I am just glad to learn that there are so many other people out there who agree with me. I find it offensive actually that they are lowering their standards in order to cater to DUMB people. I mean.. Really? They think people are so insecure that they won’t watch a channel because it’s called SciFi? So their solution is to change the name to some misspelled nonsense. I find the whole thing really irritating, especially since they obviously don’t care what their real fans think.
Since everyone is sharing their ages, I am 21 and I’m not the only one of my female friends who enjoys watching SciFi. Many of them are not nerds at all. I also find it dumb that they attribute the term ‘SciFi’ to ‘nerdy boys in basements’ or whatever. There is obviously a wide variety of watchers and supporters.

June 20, 2009 at 12:09 am
(36) Sara says:

I can see their desire to go with a brandable name, but it’s really rather silly. By having ‘SciFi’ they already had name recognition and association in the public arena. To me, this seems an action to move away from Science Fiction and into…well I’m not sure what.

I’m wary when I hear words like ‘trendy’ and ‘mainstreaming’. Next they’ll be ‘right-sizing’ the real SciFi content to ‘fit’ what they think their audience is (tho from prior comments I’m given to understand that’s been underway for a while).

Oh and I’m in that 30-something female demographic they say this change will appeal to…I say um thanks but I’m not as shallow as you seem to think I am.

In the end a name change isn’t important-EssEffSee or SyFy, a rose is a rose is a rose. It’s the content that counts.

July 8, 2009 at 11:18 am
(37) Vi says:

I never understood the theory that science fiction was only for ‘geeky’ boys with pencil protectors in their pockets. I am sixty, a woman and have long enjoyed science fiction and fantasy books and movies. What is the problem with TPTB that they can’t understand that people who are contributors to the workforce and society in general enjoy an escape from responsibilities that doesn’t include staged fights and dreary so called ‘beautiful’ people.
Changing the name from SciFi, which is a long, held dear diminutive of Science Fiction to Syfy is
an insult to the itelligent writers who made life fun and interesting, and to those of us who have loved the genre and all of its subs over the years.
Bad move on the part of the parent company.

July 10, 2009 at 2:58 pm
(38) Tim Travaglini says:

Changing the name of the channel to “SyFy” is the stupidest thing I have ever heard.

July 20, 2009 at 11:39 pm
(39) B. Davis says:

What’s the big deal? Do you not hear yourself when you actually say “SyFy?” It sounds just like “Sci-Fi.” It sounds exactly the same but looks cooler.

August 4, 2009 at 1:26 pm
(40) Tobias Holbrook says:

It’s the symbolism of changing the name, it appears, rather than the actual change itself.

I don’t get Syfy, or Siffy, or Sci-Fi, but I like the genre. I’m proably in the demographic they were talking about (yes, I’m a teenage male, and my computers in the basemnt so that’s where I am), but you must remember the difficulty in getting accurate stats. From the comments here it would appear that women who were 40+ were the main demographic, but that is complicated by various factors (i.e. liklihood of that particular demographic visiting this website).

But… wrestling on a Sci-Fi channel? WTF? Same for ghost hunting, although I can understand the teneus link: ghosts are, after all, probably fiction, and some people want ‘Parapsychology’ classified as science.

That’s my $2e15 Zimbabwe.

February 1, 2010 at 10:01 pm
(41) Cassandra says:

Well Syfy isn’t too bad. I see where they’re coming from b/c they don’t want to appear like geeks but I like Scifi fine. I ‘m also a female teen viewer who watches shows like Gossip Girl and goes to the mall and aren’t a closet geek. Syfy(Scifi in my heart) I don’t think you could be badly marketed. You have provided me with great shows like Dead like me, Never Cry Werewolf, and other imagination creative shows. You are a household name already with your scary movies, Ani Mondays(Anime Mondays) and other good shows!

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