Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery – Yachting Australia changes its name

Despite the fact that Australian Sailing has been the country's best performance sailing magazine since it was founded in 1976, the sports governing body in this country, Yachting Australia, has decided to call itself Australian Sailing too. This follows the move by the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) last year to re-name itself World Sailing.

In our opinion, Sailing Australia would have been a better name for the governing body as the new name will cause confusion about whether it is the magazine or the governing body that is being referenced. In addition, we have the rights to the name Australian Sailing on social media channels, meaning the governing body will need to use a different name there.

While it would be possible for Yaffa Media, the owner of Australian Sailing magazine, to pursue a “passing off” action against the governing body, in the interests of the sport we will not be taking that action.

Just remember whenever you hear or read the name Australian Sailing that the magazine predates the organisation by 40 years.

Here is the official announcement from the organisation Australian Sailing (see it's confusing already!).

At a specially called General Meeting last Friday, Yachting Australia’s Member State & Territory Associations unanimously approved the change of the company’s name to Australian Sailing. The change of name embodies the most significant organisational reforms in the sport’s history which are in the final stages of delivery.

President Matt Allen said that changing the name was not just a branding exercise but makes a clear statement of intent that the organisational reforms well underway are about Sailing gearing itself to compete as a successful sport in Australia.

“Over the past 18 months, Yachting Australia and our Member State Associations have made a huge undertaking in changing to a national governance and streamlined management structure, so we can work with our network of clubs and classes to build a strong and sustainable sport. “

“While our Clubs have members who own all types of water craft, sailing represents the major sporting activity that is undertaken and the change to Australian Sailing fully expresses this activity for those in the sport and provides a clearer definition of what we do, to encourage new people to come into our Clubs and discover sailing,” Matt added.

Looking to the future, Chief Executive Matt Carroll said, “The change of name allows us to fully embrace all types of sailing, from the traditional keelboat and dinghy, to windsurfing and kiteboarding. We need to compete in the market for sport participants, so the change to Sailing is important in presenting our sport as dynamic and appealing to the younger generation and the sporting public.

The change was proposed after consultation by Yachting Australia with the Member Yachting Associations and clubs. A new contemporary script has been used with a repositioning of the sail/wave logo. The name is effective immediately and will be rolled out progressively. There is no change to the Australian Sailing Team name or logo, representing the performance pathway. 

Australian Sailing Organisation logo

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