“When Time Inc. and Warner Communications announced their merger, the new company lacked a trademark. Warner was primarily concerned with entertainment, Time with journalism. So their common denominator needed to be much broader: looking and listening, reading and hearing, receiving and sending. The new logo was a pictograph combination of an eye and ear, the essence of communication.”
Quoted from Decoding Design and the C&G Partners website.
Time Warner logo
When Steff Geissbuhler, who went on to form C&G Partners, was asked by johnson banks to name the worst design crime he’ve seen, he said, “The redrawing of my Time Warner logo, making it weaker, and then calling it theirs.”
It is a strange refinement. I wonder how that was explained.
Update: Time Warner Cable was acquired by Charter Communications in May 2016. The brand is now known as Spectrum, doing away with the classic Time Warner eye, and replacing it with something much more forgettable.