This great, 4minute video takes you the history of Northwest Airlines. From their first flight to a nod to the merger at the end. The video shows a few employees saying, “the sun will never set on Northwest Airlines,” however at the very end there is an animated Northwest tail that flips around and shows the Delta livery, showing they realize that the sun will soon set on the Northwest Airlines livery.
The flight crew said they became engrossed in a conversation about airline policy (and honestly, who couldn’t?) and lost track of their location. However, the FAA is investigating if pilot fatigue played any roll in this event.
The flight from San Diego to Minneapolis had 144 passengers onboard and none of them were aware of what happened, until the aircraft was swarmed by police once they finally arrived. The police kept all passengers onboard until they were allowed to question the flight crew.
The FAA lost contact with the aircraft while it was traveling at 37,000 feet and they notified the Air National Guard, who then put two fighter jets on alert. They were never given the order to take off.
Andrea Allmon, a passenger who had been traveling from San Diego on business, stated, “When I do my job, I do my job. These guys are supposed to be paying attention to the flight. The safety of the passengers should be first and foremost. (It’s) unbelievable to me that they weren’t paying attention. Just not paying attention.”
She is right. No matter if they were awake having a heated debate, they should have still been paying attention to their flight and of course the radio. The FAA is investigating the incident and the two pilots have been suspended from flying. Hopefully it is not found that the pilots fell asleep during flight.
A Northwest Airline's tail up in the far north, Alaska
The website GoNorthwest.com has been operating for the past ten years, providing travel information for the Pacific Northwestern part of the United States.
Northwest Airlines, which has recently been acquired by Delta Airlines feel they own the rights to the name. This started when site owner Jack High trademarked his name last year after someone stole his site’s contents and created an illegal copy under a similar name. High defends his actions stating he has no issue with any other company using the word, “northwest,” but is just concerned about protecting his own site.
Andrea James with the Seattle PI points out that over 10,500 companies have “northwest” as part of their name, just in Washington state. There are also 366 trademarks that exist for “NW” and “Northwest” in the United States.
Delta Airlines commented that “Northwest is a world-famous mark that is used by one of the oldest airlines in the world and that has been built with billions of dollars of investments over eight decades.” The airline continued, stating they were concerned about the future of the site causing additional confusion of the brands. To me, this seems like a big company going a few steps too far. Here are some of my thoughts:
#1 The Northwest Airlines brand is going away. Delta is in the process of changing all their naming over to Delta. There won’t be any confusion in the future since the name will be gone soon. Why spend money on a dying brand?
#2 There is no record of people getting the two names confused. Even searching for “Go Northwest” on Google, Northwest Airlines doesn’t show up.
#3 The look and feel of the two websites and what the companies offer GREATLY differ and it would be very hard for someone to mistake them.
#4 Should Delta go after all the companies that use the word “delta”? If one goes to GoDelta.com, it forwards you to a Delta marketing group (wow that font looks very similar). Should they be worried? How about Southwest Airlines or Alaska Airlines? When using a geographic location to name your business, you should expect there are going to be people that use part of your name in travel-related businesses.
#5 I don’t see how this is going to look good for Northwest Airlines and Delta Airlines. They should just back off now, it just isn’t worth the bad publicity.
#6 Sometimes the legal and moral lines aren’t so clear. Even if Northwest/Delta is shown to be legally right, does that make it right? Should a large, well established, world renowned airline be able to control how a very localized, small, travel website runs its business?
What are your thoughts on this? Is Northwest/Delta going too far or are they justified in protecting their brand?
Weight equals money and when a fully loaded Airbus A380 can weigh over a million pounds, airlines don’t want to be adding any unnecessary weight. The airline industry has become very creative with adding new fees to bring in additional revenue, but they are also looking at creative ways to lessen weight and save money.
Northwest Airlines (err, I guess Delta) is now cutting spoons on their flights to help save weight. Sure one little spoon might not seem to make a big difference, but a Northwest Boeing 747-400 holds more than 400 people — that’s a lot of spoons (why don’t they just bring back the spork?)
They aren’t the only airline considering utensil overhaul. Japan Airlines has decreased the size of their cutlery (which not only saves money in weight, but for purchase price of the actual product). Other airlines are cleaning their planes more (dust = weight), not supplying magazines and carrying less water on board.
I am sure this concept will catch on. From cutting pillows, to the type of fabric being used in seats, to having less gadgets (boo), to maybe even someday accounting for passengers’ weights (hopefully not, but RyanAir might be crazy enough), the airlines will probably continue to look for cost-cutting measures, especially as they move toward better fuel-efficiency.