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New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
 

before

after

First launched in 1964 (as Independent Television System, then The 0/10 Network, then Network Ten), Network 10 is one of five free-to-air networks in Australia (similar to the U.S.’s NBC, ABC, CBS, and FOX). Its programming covers the range of a regular major network from reality TV, to scripted shows, to game shows, and more. Network 10 now encompasses more than the original single channel, including 10 Peach and 10 Boss, as well as other digital extensions. Acquired by CBS Corporation in 2017, Network 10 introduced a new identity designed by Sydney, Australia-based Principals in collaboration with Network 10’s in-house design team.

From its founding in the 1960’s 10 has always prospered when it has broken with the pack and offered Australians refreshingly different entertainment choice. Now under the confident ownership of CBS, 10 is ready to trailblaze once more, investing in a raft of fresh counterprogramming concepts and reigniting its once famous larrikin personality. The new identity system reflects 10’s ambition to be the local leaders in escapist entertainment and connects the network’s growing family of channels and catch-up platforms through a bold new mark and mischievous language.

Principals project page

New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
Primary logo.
New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
Logo on a background.

The old logo was first introduced in 1991 and originally had none of the bevels, gradients, shadows, and highlights that plagued the latest version. After nearly 30 years the logo had probably built a considerable amount of equity likely akin to NBC’s peacock or CBS’ eye, making the change for those used to the logo rather hard to bear. Having, myself, no emotional and historical connection with the old logo I would say it was about time for it to be retired. It wasn’t a pleasant logo in 1991 and it wasn’t a pleasant logo two weeks ago. Perhaps there was something to be salvaged in the oddity of the extended letters under the hand of a good typographer but given that they changed to the number “10” instead of spelling it out, it’s a moot point.

The new logo is good. It’s not great. It’s not bad. It has an accessible, mainstream, trying-to-please-everyone aesthetic that is hard to both argue against and cheer for. I like the how the top of the “1” is formed from a quarter slice of the “0” and I wish they had done a solid color shadow instead of the drop shadow as that would have given this a more crisp, confident look. I like how the “1” and “0” overlap to form a single shape and I like how it fits inside the circle. I don’t love any of it but I don’t hate any of it either. For a free-to-air network channel it’s par for the course.

“Our aim here is simple: make our brands more distinctive, give them stronger cut-through in a hyper-competitive media sector, ensure greater consistency across our family of brands, strengthen our already deep engagement with audiences, and underline our entertainment credentials. If you cut out the jargon, what this means is that TV’s wild child has its voice back,” he said.

Network 10 press release

New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
Mostly all logos, before and after.
New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
Mostly all new logos.

Changing all the old names to new “10”-based names makes sense as does adapting them to the new logo. All the different type treatments are questionable in terms of cohesiveness — i.e., they don’t cohesive-ify — but they do manage to convey a specific persona in the combination of the font choices, the colors, and their names. 10 Peach is more friendly and accessible; 10 Boss is more hardcore. Perhaps they could have all been unified in the same style as the more broad typography of 10 Play and 10 Daily but then I would probably be writing about how all the type treatments are the same. I actually like the 10 Play and 10 Daily treatments and how they added one splash of color in the wordmark part. Overall, they are fine in the same way as the primary logo.

New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
Guidelines.
New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
Brand book (I think).
New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
App.
New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
Ads.
New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
Things on desktops.
New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
Cup and car.

It’s hard to tell what’s going on in static applications. I mean, I can tell what’s going on but it looks to be all over the place at the moment, ranging from minimalist stuff like the “Enter 10” ad to don’t-know-when-to-stop stuff like the Masterchef ad above it. In general though, you can see the potential of the logo being recognizable across the different expressions. And going back to my comment about the shadow of the “1” being a hard shadow instead of a drop shadow… the image above shows that but unfortunately it’s not very effective as it makes the top of the “1” look detached. I was thinking something like in the Thumbtack logo. But that ship has sailed.

New Logo and On-air Look for Network 10 by Principals and In-house
Animation stills.
Reel presented by Network 10.
Reel presented by Principals. Similar but a little different.
And one more promo-y kind of reel.

The on-air look is overall fine but also has a feeling of trying all the tricks in the book to see what sticks without an overarching concept or approach driving everything in a more focused way. But, again, it’s fine. There’s nothing in here to passionately dislike — perhaps the most contentious thing is turning the “10” into a face, which I think is kind of harmless fun. Overall, nothing groundbreaking here and I can only imagine the on-air look being an improvement over whatever was there before in support of the old logo. This is a decent system that plays well as a major, national network.

Thanks to Vu Nguyen for the tip.

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