It’s the little blue bird that has come to play such a prominent part in so many of our lives, perhaps then it’s no great surprise that Twitter’s new logo has caused so much discussion. The changes themselves are fairly minor, it’s lost its little tuft of hair, lost one of the tail feathers and now faces upwards as though taking off rather than pootling along as before.
The idea is that the new bird will become the single Twitter icon, rendering the lower case “t”, the bubbled typefaces and even the word Twitter largely obsolete.
Over on the Twitter blog, creative director Doug Bowman explained: “Our new bird grows out of love for ornithology, design within creative constraints, and simple geometry.
“This bird is crafted purely from three sets of overlapping circles — similar to how your networks, interests and ideas connect and intersect with peers and friends. Whether soaring high above the earth to take in a broad view, or flocking with other birds to achieve a common purpose, a bird in flight is the ultimate representation of freedom, hope and limitless possibility.”
Of course both the tech and mainstream media have got their own takes on the story. The LA Times deserves praise for the headline “Twitter flips the bird, adopts new logo” while The Daily Mail estimates the redesign would have cost between $8,000 and $20,000 although it’s unclear how they arrived at these figures.
Early reactions have focussed on the new upward trajectory, which many feel is designed to reflect the microblogging site’s sense of its bright business future (perhaps amid the post floatation Facebook furore).
The New York Times believes that “growing up means a new logo” while TechCrunch says it symbolises, “ a company ready to take off, not just cruise on… And if you wanted to read entirely too much into the redesign, you could say the sharper, aerodynamic 3-feather design represents Twitter’s improved speed and reliability. No bloated fail whale here.”
Matthew Panzarino of The Next Web is interested in the streamlined branding approach and what that says about Twitter’s self confidence.
“Eliminating logotype from the branding entirely is a bold move that assumes the ‘bird’ is a uniquely and instantly recognisable image.,” he writes. “Most of the largest brands still have both a type-driven and symbol-driven aspect to their branding. Notable examples of brands that exist as a symbol just as well as they do as type include Nike and Apple.
“With the simplification (note the less furry nature of the new bird) of the logo, Twitter is hoping to create an iconic symbol of its own.”
Meanwhile many outlets have also commented on the list of rules attached to the use of the new logo. “The bird is the word: Don’t mess with Twitter logo,” is one headline reflecting the detailed guidleines.
Do “use our official, unmodified Twitter bird to represent our brand, make sure the bird faces right (and) allow for at least 150% buffer space around the bird,” we are told but don’t: “use speech bubbles or words around the bird, rotate or change the direction of the bird, animate the bird, duplicate the bird, change the color of the bird or use any other marks or logos to represent our brand.”