I’m a huge fan of National Public Radio. It being what I listen to most these days as I can’t stand most of the music stations in our area and I’m not ready to pay for satellite radio. I’ve called it by its initials for years now and, come to think of it, so have they so it’s a little amusing to see they’re finally making it official:
So the Washington-based organization has quietly changed its name to its familiar initials. Much like the corporate names KFC or AT&T, the initials now stand for the initials.
NPR says it’s abbreviating the name it has used since its debut in 1971 because it’s more than radio these days. Its news, music and informational programming is heard over a variety of digital devices that aren’t radios; it also operates news and music Web sites.
Hence: “NPR is more modern, streamlined,” says Vivian Schiller, NPR’s chief executive. She points to other “re-brandings” by media organizations, such as Cable News Network, which has been plain old CNN for years.
Honestly I’ve never understood this trend. I can only assume it’s based on a cynical assumption about the ever-lowering IQ of the average American. Who the hell can remember Kentucky Fried Chicken these days? Better shorten it to KFC so it’ll be much easier to store in the handful of brain cells most people still have working after eating all that fried chicken!
The one thing I can see that has come out of this trend is an opportunity for the conspiracy theorists to start up some ridiculous myth about the company. The one for KFC being that they were forced by the government to change their name because they grow all their chickens in vats and they can’t legally be called chicken anymore!
I wonder what myth they’ll come up with for NPR? Leave your ideas in the comments.