A Monthly Meditation on Branding and Language
From Your Favorite Copy Shop, Editorial Emergency

#27 (April 24, 2009): It Came From Planet Editorial

Greetings, Earthlings. We come in peace, with tales of sci-fi rebranding, some corporate jargon that should be lost in space, a quaint selection of atomic-age celluloid and Not Our Clients photos of people who really don't like aliens (and may still be living in the '50s). We trust the accumulated data will provide what you humans call pleasure. Commencing transmission ...

Semper Sci Fi

ImageOn July 7, 2009, NBC Universal's Sci Fi Channel ó the network responsible for the hit series "Battlestar Galactica" and such original movies as "Ice Spiders," "Android Apocalypse" and "Mansquito" ó will complete a radical rebranding process. When it emerges from the laboratory, it will offer a retooled programming menu and a new name: Syfy.

The reason? For one thing, "Sci Fi" was too ubiquitous a term, the net's owners reasoned, and they needed a brand name they could fully own. And so, after receiving the divinations of expensive consultants, they purchased "Syfy" from a web portal. Why Syfy?

Read the rest here.

Red Pen Diaries: "Impactful" -- Ew

Image Apparently, "impactful" is a word (and by this I mean it's recognized by a handful of reasonably reputable sources).

I choose not to use it, however. I think it sounds horrible, like an impacted wisdom tooth or, heaven forefend, an impacted bowel.

I guess the days of saying, "That 'Hi, I'm a Mac' campaign sure had an impact" are gone; now it's all, "That 'Hi, I'm a Mac' campaign sure was impactful."

I cringe every time I hear "impactful." In my heart of hearts, I just want "impact" to be a noun. I prefer things to have an impact or make an impact or approach the point of impact; I don't want them to impact each other or behave impactfully.

Read the rest here.

Round & Shiny: Saucer Eyes

ImageOur story about Sci Fi vs. Syfy naturally made me daydream about my favorite science-fiction flicks ó notably the breathless, paranoid classics of the '50s.

The Red Scare machine was running at full tilt, and pop culture obligingly furnished fantastic metaphors for commie menace and nuclear peril: rampaging irradiated critters, ruthless interstellar armadas and unfeeling enemies-in-disguise. But strip away the misguided political subtext and you'll find some delirious entertainment; watching just a few frames of any of the creature features listed below sends me tumbling back to my movie-mad adolescence.

Read the rest here.

Not Our Clients: Mad Speller's Tea Party Edition

The recent conservative "tea parties" made a fairly loud (if overhyped) yawp across our great nation. We may not share the protesters' views, but EE always appreciates passionate citizen involvement. Still, if you're new to public displays of discontent, it might be a good idea to give your sign a once-over before you parade it in front of the cameras.

On the plus side, she spelled "Obama" correctly.

This was a stinging rebuke to the Moran family of Barstow, Calif.

In other news, you can peruse a vast conspiracy of dunces in our Not Our Clients gallery. Would you like to make your voice heard? Document some brutal repression of language, grammar or usage and leak it to us at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it with a patriotic message of your choosing. If we elect to expose it, we'll send you an iTunes gift card. You can use it to download "Let the Eagle Soar."


Editorial Emergency puts words in your mouth.
Assuming you're a marketer, creative, lifestyler, publicist, artist and/or do-gooder
who wants to connect with and persuade consumers.
We've worked for these kinds of clients on this kind of stuff.

In case of editorial emergency, break glass and call ...

(323) 259-5876
e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
surf: www.editorialemergency.com
send checks: 2062 Panamint Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90065

Explore our monthly e-zine, Editorializing,
in the privacy of
your own in-box.