(Est. 1990) “DirecTV is an American direct broadcast satellite service provider and broadcaster based in El Segundo, California. As of July 2015, it is a subsidiary of AT&T. Its satellite service, launched on June 17, 1994, transmits digital satellite television and audio to households in the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean. Its primary competitors are Dish Network and cable television providers. After receiving approval from the United States Federal Communications Commission and United States Department of Justice, AT&T’s acquisition of DirecTV in a transaction valued at $48.5 billion was completed on July 24, 2015.” (Wikipedia)
In July of 2015, AT&T acquired DirecTV and swiftly proceeded to remove the dish "D" icon the service has had since its inception. I received a few tips about it at the time but didn't seem like there was a lot to the story. The new plot twist, though, introduced in December, where AT&T simply plopped the icon for AT&T next to the DirecTV name? Now that's a story. A horror story. Comcast also did this in 2012, plopping the NBC peacock on top of the Comcast corporate name. The main problem I see with this "strategy" is that the logo becomes nothing more than an accessory that can be passed around from company to service to product without any hesitation. In the clients' minds they are surely thinking that they are banking on the positive equity of the adopted icons but all they are doing is diluting them into two separate entities, each with its own different audiences and purposes. When I see the AT&T logo I think AT&T, not DirecTV and when I think of AT&T I'm also thinking of their expensive service and contracts, not necessarily an association I want to carry into another product. Also, all I'm thinking is that we are inching our way to a Demolition Man future where all industries are down to a single brand. Like in the movie, where Taco Bell is the only remaining restaurant, AT&T will be the only telco left.
Thanks to Mitch for the tip.