A well designed brand is like an onion, the good ones have many layers and provide many benefits for the organization’s image management, for example. While I could put too much emphasis on layers in this post, in their submissions to Engadget they have expertly laid out several layers: Business, Brand, Environment, then User, then Brand, then Environment, then User, then Brand, and finally Environment. A successful brand can have many layers and some layers along with others depending on its function. Now, I may be coming down heavy with the praise but I just love the integrities of each icon. Each together creates a strong logo with a distinct personality.
Now, I could have given you more examples of how they come together or how many are needed to demonstrate the principle but instead you will just have to take my word for it for the following reasons: 1) The result is good and 2) Nobody wants to be the guy or girl to do the logo reboot.
When pairing the two conflicting factors — the need to look cool and authoritative vs the need to be cool and authoritative — we can create beautiful effects by aligning levels, colors, and elements. Take the notch on the user interface to the user’s bio, extend it to a message or product benefit, and fill it in. When it’s unique, it spreads like wildfire.
The end result is cohesive, logical, and informative. It’s hard to beat the previous logo, which has definitely been a subject of discussion (most notably in this Engadget review) and rightfully so. My main criticism would be the unnecessary bevel over the “I”; perhaps there is some conceptual slack in the animation that resolves this after sampling some more code.
This is a really nice redesign that takes the old logo and outfit it with a new system that is all appropriate for a digital company (no children under 10, though) and that also happens to load the appropriate symbol on the logo-as-window approach. The only thing missing is the interlocking bevel and angle of the old icon.
The implications of digital
The digital only applications are straightforward and, to a certain degree, effective in changing the logo from big to small or from angled to vertical. The best part of the logo here are the side views, particularly the one that shows the different combinations of the icon with different intensities and markers, giving us a brief glimpse into what the future could look like with this logo in use.
The static applications are good, working around the icon and wordmarks by positioning the icons on the grid and having the right column of people (or animals) line up in a strict manner to set up the icon. The white icon on top of photos might turn some folks off, but hey, it’s not bad. Overall, this is a good evolution that makes the company look like a major, mainstream digital sports publication, avoiding the clunkiness of Friday Likes found in more traditional sports media.