Are you ready to take the Oath?
Tim Armstrong certainly hopes so.
The AOL CEO took to Twitter to announce that Verizon-owned AOL and Yahoo will soon be under a new umbrella: Oath.
Once Verizon completes its acquisition of Yahoo’s Internet division, AOL and Yahoo will answer to a newly formed parent company dubbed Oath. Verizon’s purchase of Yahoo’s core assets for $4.48 billion in cash, is expected to close in the second quarter of this year.
Not surprisingly, the name Oath has been the subject of ridicule on both Twitter and in the media.
“‘Take the Oath’ is kind of a scary tagline fundamentally. But when a company makes its money through intrusive ads and tracking (sorry) and monopolistic practices, telling customers to take it could be misconstrued as aggressive, e.g. Take the Oath and like it,” Tech Crunch said in a pros and cons list in which the cons side was, of course, longer.
“They’re calling it Oath. Yeah, like the promise. No, I don’t know why either, but that distant rumbling you hear? That’s the sound of the revamped moniker being ruthlessly dragged through Twitter by innumerable hot takes,” Engadget wrote.
“Yet for as unappealing and clunky as it is to call a company ‘Oath’ — ugh, like listening to Donald Duck try to order breakfast — this isn’t quite the worst rebranding failure in the modern history of corporate marketing.”
Despite the jokes and criticisms, Armstrong remains upbeat.
“Some of the reaction you see to the brand is short-term thinking, and we are a long-term company. We are big believers in brand,” Armstrong told Bloomberg Television. “We developed the brand in-house. And in the last 24 hours we’ve probably gotten $50 million worth of brand marketing for it. Even though it got leaked, it’s turned out to be a huge benefit for us.”