Circle 7 logo
The Circle 7 logo is one of the most commonly used television station logos in the United States. Designed in the early 1960s for the American Broadcasting Company's five owned-and-operated stations (all of which broadcast on VHF channel 7), the logo, or a version of it, is currently being used not only by ABC stations and affiliates, but also by a number of television broadcasters around the world.
History and information
The Circle 7 logo was created by G. Dean Smith, a San Francisco graphic designer, and first used in 1962 by ABC as the logo for its (then) five owned-and-operated television stations: WABC-TV in New York City; KABC-TV in Los Angeles; WBKB (now WLS-TV) in Chicago; KGO-TV in San Francisco; and WXYZ-TV in Detroit. When ABC applied for television station licenses in the late 1940s, it was thought that the low-band channel frequencies (2 through 6) would be removed from use for television broadcasting, thus making these five stations broadcasting on VHF channel 7 the lowest on the television dial. American Broadcasting Companies, Inc., ABC's corporate parent, registered the Circle 7 logo with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office in 1962.
When WABC-TV adopted the Eyewitness News format in 1968, all reporters and anchors were required to wear a blazer with a Circle 7 patch (a lapel pin in later years) when they appeared on the air – a marketing practice that spread to the other ABC O&Os, and eventually to other ABC affiliates. Stations commonly used the logo on microphone flags, newscaster clothing and design of sets, as well as on-air graphics for locally originated programming.
The logo's design consists of a circle outline, with the horizontal line and the bottom curve of the stylized numerical "7" placed within it connecting the circle. The Circle 7 logo was designed to be interchangeable with the circular ABC logo (as redesigned in 1962 by legendary graphic designer Paul Rand) in network and station imaging, although since the late 1990s, the ABC logo was incorporated into the logo design in different variations. It also was used as the name of the production company for locally-produced programming by ABC owned-and-operated stations, Circle 7 Productions, which existed prior to ABC's 1985 takeover by Capital Cities Communications. Originally a proprietary logo for ABC's owned-and-operated stations, stations affiliated with the network began using the logo as early as the 1970s; WXYZ-TV retained the logo after ABC's sale of the station to the E. W. Scripps Company in 1986 (and later copied it when it acquired former Capital Cities station WKBW-TV in 2014).
The G. Dean Smith version is still exclusive to ABC owned-and-operated stations and affiliates, though this version (or for that matter, variants of the "Circle 7" thereof) is not used by all ABC-affiliated stations broadcasting on channel 7; some stations affiliated with ABC or other networks use variants of the logo that differ from the original, often with the typeface of the numerical "7" or the circle's design (for example, WHDH in Boston and WSVN in Miami, both owned by Sunbeam Television and respectively affiliated with NBC and Fox, use a variant highly similar to G. Dean Smith's design but with the "7" ridging – rather than connecting to – the circle outline and its bottom curve aligned slightly farther to the right).
Stations that use the Circle 7 logo
- In Australia, the "Circle 7" logo was used by the Seven Network starting in 1956 and then again from 1968 to 1970.
- In Malaysia, the logo was adopted by NTV7 which is owned by Media Prima Berhad.
- In Peru, RTP (now TV Perú) adopted this logo in 1989, and used it until 1991.
- In the Philippines, GMA (also known as DZBB-TV) used the logo from the early 1960s until 1974, when it was dropped in due to Marcos' martial law.
- Fischbeck, George; Roach, Randy (2013). Dr. George: My Life in Weather. Albuquerque, New Mexico: University of New Mexico Press. ISBN 9780826353337.
- Murray, Michael D.; Godfrey, Donald G. (eds.) (1997). Television in America: Local Station History from Across the Nation. Ames, IA: Iowa State Press. p. 6. ISBN 0-8138-2969-0.
- Chicago Sun-Times:: Search
- Grey, Johnathan; Johnson, Derek (2013), A Companion to Media Authorship, John Wiley & Sons, ISBN 9781118495254
- American Broadcasting Company logos
- Enclosed Alphanumerics, a section of Unicode that includes circle-IRP dingbats (e.g. ➆)
- "New '7' logo designed for KGO-TV (ch.7)" (PDF file), Broadcasting, August 27, 1962, p. 72.
- "Designed Symbols for AT&T, ABC Stations Dean Smith; Corporate Logo Creator", Los Angeles Times, March 28, 1987
- Station logos as seen in vintage TV guides and screen captures[dead link]