New Continental-United logo has purists angry with mergerMajor business mergers can cause a number of gripes - everything from antitrust concerns to fair stock pricing can become a topic of debate. However, sometimes the argument is a little bit more pedestrian. In the case of the impending Continental Airlines and United Airlines merger, it seems the biggest complaint is how the two companies will combine their logos.

Branding is a complicated process, and consumers can become quite attached to a brand's symbol - consider, for example, the Nike "swoosh" or the McDonald's golden arches. United has long been known for its tulip-shaped stylized "U" logo, and many purists would like to see it stay that way.

The merger between the two brands is meant to be one of equals, rather than a buyout - which is why United's decision to create a hybrid logo incorporating Continental's globe has some brand loyalists up in arms. In fact, a Facebook page called "Save the Tulip" has been formed, calling United's logo "an iconic part of aviation history" that deserves to be preserved.

"You can't think of United without 'Rhapsody in Blue' and the tulip," Timothy Jasionowski, one of the instigators of the "Save the Tulip" effort, told the Chicago Tribune.

The outrage is just another example of how, no matter how much companies prepare for a merger, resistance can sometimes come from the most unexpected places.
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