ABC Family Renames Itself "Freeform;" Is Basically Every Emo Teen

You know that time in your life when you're still not quite certain who you are? You're trying to solidify your identity, and you're railing against authority, your parents, and the other external forces trying to place names, labels, and judgments upon you. Maybe you decide the moniker you were given at birth doesn't quite fit you. Suddenly, "Lauren" is so lame. There are four other people with that name in your grade alone! It's so not you. From now on, everyone should call you Hexagon. Yeah, that's right. Hex. What's that time called again? Oh right, being a teenager.

That's basically what's happening to the television network currently known as ABC Family.

Today, ABC Family announced that as of January, it will no longer be going by that name. It's new name is "Freeform." That's right, Freeform. In addition to rebranding itself, ABC Family has also rebranded its target audience. It used to strive to reach millennials. However, the network notes in a press release, millennials are a specific generation that will grow old, and the term will one day be retired along with said generation. Freeform will instead cater to what it calls "becomers," "a life stage that spans people who are 14-34."

Becomers are as amorphous and fluid as the name Freeform implies. I'm basically picturing Salvador Dali's "Persistence of Memory" right now, but with Pretty Little Liars characters. "They explore endless possibilities and their passions take shape," the press release continues. "Freeform personifies this fluidity and will deliver ideas, forms of content, and ways of interacting with the brand."

Basically, I would pay a zillion dollars to have been a fly on the wall in the months of meetings between marketers, consultants, youth-culture experts, and trend-spotters who were tasked with coming up with the name and concept behind Freeform, and designating a new, fluid demographic called becomers. Here are the words and images I imagine they kept pinned to their inspiration wall (for those of you becomers, that's like Pinterest, IRL) during the months of deliberation:
Photo: Mathieu Young/ABC Family.
fun
friendly
Instagram
hashtags
#blessed
flow
socially conscious
adventurous
fluid
pansexual
gender-nonconforming
new
rebirth
renewal
soul
flexible
community
communal
firsts
love
play
becoming
smiling
inter
sharing
vegan
freegan

You get the gist. Basically, the network execs at ABC Family were all, "Please stop associating us with the days when we aired The 700 Club, and what does ABC Family even mean? That we're like ABC but for families? No way. We have Pretty Little Liars and a show called Baby Daddy. Young & Hungry makes a blow-job joke a minute. We gotta ditch this family shit, ASAP. We've been edging it up on the reg for years now."

Oh, and in case it's not clear, I'm fully on board with this change, because if it means more shows like The Fosters (love you, Stef and Lena), bring it. I kid because I love, ABC Family Freeform. We've all gone through identity crises. I'm here if you need to talk through this awkward, emo-teen stage of yours.

More from TV

Mad Men ended nearly 18 months ago, and Don and Betty Draper's marriage ended long before that. But on Sunday night's premiere of The Last Man on Earth, ...
We know we don't KNOW our favorite TV characters, as in really know them, but somehow we can still erupt in tears and convulsions when they're taken away ...
JoJo Fletcher isn't opposed to continuing her love story in front of a television audience. Fletcher, who has been spending the summer with fiancé Jordan...
The 2016 Emmy Awards were off to a great start when a surprising announcement came over the loudspeaker. A voiceover announced the next presenter: none ...
Sex and the City, like a cat, James Bond, or the succulent you keep by your desk, will never die. At the very least, rumors surrounding the show will ...
One Game Of Thrones actor has a bone to pick with showrunners David Benioff and D. B. Weiss and how they treat their cast. In an interview with StarTrek...
The Today Show's Savannah Guthrie is pregnant with her second child, and we've just learned the baby's sex. She built up the suspense on the Today show ...
Kimmy Schmidt lives in her own world. It's a cross between middle school, the year 1999, and present-day New York. Mix in the fact that she was held ...
There have been quite a few shows about witches throughout the history of television: I Dream of Jeannie, Bewitched, and Charmed. But perhaps the most ...
The Making a Murderer saga has been seeing more and more real-life plot twists lately. The latest: Steven Avery is engaged to a woman he's only seen once...
Former Will & Grace cast members have been posting photos of themselves on what looks like the set of the hit series, which ran from 1998 until 2006. ...
We saw the twist coming. Lots of people did. So if Sam Esmail, Mr. Robot creator, knew that we would likely sniff out the fact that Elliot was in (...
This week’s episode of Rob & Chyna lives in the overlap of the Venn diagram that is Rob & Chyna and the mothership Keeping Up With the ...
Simone Biles lent her imprimatur to Pretty Little Liars when she visited their set recently. Her journey to Rosewood was well-documented on their official ...