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Tycho / on Fri, Apr 28 2006 at 12:46 am

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Whence Wii

You really must be joking.  What names were rejected, that something like Wii remained vertical at the end of it?

The range of responses thus far have not been terribly surprising.   It’s the usual camps, really, and I don’t know if these positions exist throughout all of human dialogue or if they are local to our merry band, but they are known to me.  People who hate it because they hate X, people who hate it because it is not good, people who like it because other people hate it, people who like it because they are "above the fray," and people who like it because they like X.   The first million times I saw this scene play out I could always find some piquant flavor in the proceedings, something that made each conflict unique.   Now all I see is a kind of template superimposed over every motive, as though the argument were taking place between cells on a spreadsheet. 

I’m uncomfortable with it because I think a word of alien origin like "Wii" is phonetically ambiguous for most people, but I doubt that I represent some genuine constituency.  Nintendo clearly felt  the name was so cryptic it required a Rosetta Stone alongside to contextualize it, which doesn’t really speak to its deep strength or intuitive character.  I believe, almost fervently, in their vision for the product - but I don’t see any reason to do their public relations work for them.  Enunciating each syllable clearly, I would call this moniker a profound error in judgement. 

I’m aware that some people like it, or in any event they don’t hate it.  I am not those people, but I think that I can live in peace with them as long as they do not try and honestly suggest that the Goddamn name is emblematic of togetherness.  What makes me mad isn’t that Nintendo has chosen a name based on bizarre, interstellar philosophy.  It’s that they chose a name that was and is so readily used to obscure and discredit the imaginative power of the system. 

Up until now, they’ve done an almost miraculous job maintaining enthusiasm for what is really a very unorthodox idea.  To be honest, I sort of thought this would be the easy part.    

(CW)TB out.

  it’s better this way


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