Seth Godin on Logos, part 2
June 6, 2007
I hate to keep dwelling on Seth Godin’s opinions about logos, but I think it is important for two reasons. 1. His thoughts represent a common misunderstanding about the value of logos. and 2. He has a huge audience of marketing people. That is the same crowd that designers need to be educating about the value of design. If they are being mislead we need to set the record straight.
Today, Seth talks about the 2012 Olympic logo story that we have all been following and draws some surprising conclusions. Seth is quoted below in bold with my responses below.
The art of picking a logo, even one for the Olympics, has almost nothing to do with taste or back story.
By that rational Seth should be praising the 2012 logo. The reality is that the 2012 logo fails for exactly those reasons: it is distastefully ugly, and it lacks any element that connects it to the event. Seth puts absolutely no importance on a logo being formally appropriate or contextually relevant. That is essentially what Seth is saying when he points to Nike, Starbucks, and Apple as examples of corporations that didn’t have to pay for their logos. To him these logos are just a random image picked by an uninformed employee. Yikes.