Truly adopting a “mobile-first” design mentality is tough for some, but not for music player manufacturer Sonos.
As The Verge reports, Sony asked the public to redesign its logo. It didn’t work out.
In 1981, Sony decided that its now-iconic logo was due for a redesign. But the company didn’t enlist a design team to come up with a new logo. No, Sony decided to make the redesign a public spectacle.
It launched the so-called “Sony International Logotype Design Contest,” and it took in nearly 30,000 submissions from around the world. A committee was formed and viewed every single entry before narrowing the list down to 59. The finalists were shown to the board of directors, company executives, designers, and sales managers. As executives were looking through the finalists, Sony must have realized it had made a huge mistake.
Redesigning a company’s brand identity is a delicate and complex process that must be taken with care. It’s not rare for companies to explore a redesign before discovering through that process that its old design is the best of them all. But by putting the entire affair in the public eye, Sony essentially obligated itself to change its logo. Worst of all, the company would have to choose a logo designed by an amateur to be the face of its brand.
As you might expect, the designs weren’t up to snuff. It’s a lot harder than it looks to create a timeless logo. According to Sony’s official history, co-founder Masaru Ibuka “decided that none of the designs was better than the original one.” And so the company moved to gracefully end the whole affair: a panel of judges chose three finalists, and instead of awarding first, second, and third place prizes, it split the prize money equally. An ad was published in Time Magazine thanking everyone for their time and effort, and it quietly noted that “until the time comes in the future that we decide to make a change, the Sony logo will remain the same.” The design contest then faded into memory.
New Texas head coach Charlie Strong had the iconic Longhorn logo removed from the white Texas helmets as fall practice commenced in Austin in preparation for the 2014 college football season.
According to writer Laken Litman of USA Today Sports, Strong’s offseason motto for Longhorn football in 2014 is to “Put the ‘T’ back in Texas Football,” one step at a time.
“He (Strong) prohibited players from throwing up the ‘Hook’Em Horns’ sign with their hands, saying they had to earn it. He’s made them walk the half mile to practice instead of taking a bus as they used to under Mack Brown. And he’s even stripped the Longhorns off their helmets.”
When the Texas players arrived for the first day of fall practice on Monday, their helmets were solid white,” Litman reported.
Presumably the Longhorn logo will return to the helmets of those players Strong and the coaching staff at Texas deem worthy of seeing game action come the start of the 2014 season later this month.
For the 2016 Super Bowl logo, the National Football League will depart from tradition and ditch the Roman numerals long used to identify each championship game. The rationale behind the change: Using L for the number 50 just didn’t look right.
“We started talking about Super Bowl 50 back at Super Bowl 40, when we completed the XL logo,” says Jaime Weston, the NFL’s vice president of brand and creative. “Every logo before it only had Xs, Vs, and Is.” After mocking up 74 iterations, Weston and her team decided the L looked “unbalanced.”
The 50th Super Bowl, to be held in San Francisco, will feature standard Arabic numbers for the first time since 1971. The new logo features a gold “50″ bisected by a silver Lombardi trophy, which has been a part of the logo since 2010. The color is a reference to the 50th anniversary and to gold’s part in the history of the host city and state. “It was the best logo,” Weston says, “not only for the league but for our business partners, broadcast partners, licensees for products.”
The switch is only temporary. The NFL will revert back to Roman numerals for Super Bowl 51, or LI.