— Jessica Gutierrez Alm, Attorney

Google changed its logo this week, and the Internet is not happy about it. In the new design, the name appears in thicker, cleaner letters. Specifically, the new design eliminates serifs—the little tails at the bottom of each letter in many fonts, like Times New Roman.

Google’s new logo and small icon image feature wider text, without serifs, and more rounded, geometric letters. Compare to the old logo and lowercase ‘g’ icon.

The announcement Tuesday, featuring a short animation sequence, revealed changes to both the primary “Google” name, as well as the small icon symbol. Google stated that the change would allow for better transitioning among various platforms and interfaces. The new font may shrink easier and translate on different screens better than the old font.

It’s the first time the company has made a major change to its logo in several years. For the most part, it seems design and branding experts are hailing it as a sleek, modern, and much needed redesign. Graphic designers have noted that the new logo, with its emphasized circles, has a friendlier vibe. The lack of serifs suggests a more modern feel, but the new logo retains pieces of its predecessor with the crooked ‘e’ and iconic color scheme.

The social media public, however, feels a bit differently about the change.

 

 

I’ll be honest. The new design does remind me a little too much of refrigerator magnets. What do you think? Sleek new design, or did Google miss the mark on this one?

 

  • James Mahoney

    Ah, yes; the traditional Comic Sans disparagement. It’s the “design” equivalent of devolving to a Nazi analogy in internet “conversations.” Both are the refuge of trolls and shallow thinkers. (Am I being impolitic here?)

    As far as the new Google logo goes, it’s right on brand. The company’s always presented a playful face, graphically speaking. This clean refresh will work across the broad and still-expanding range of screen sizes and resolutions. The icon especially will quickly become readily recognizable.

    As with almost all (but not all) logo/identity refreshes, nobody will give it a second thought in a week or two.

    • Jessica Gutierrez Alm

      Thanks for the comment, James! The comparisons to Comic Sans do seem a bit unfair–as soon as we go sans-serif, people cry Comic Sans. Either way, I think you’re right that it won’t matter in a few weeks. Google is so ingrained in our lives, we won’t even notice a difference by then.

  • Bunnie Watson

    I like the new font and the favicon. Then again, I like Comic Sans as well. To each their own. To the great unwashed Internet public: get a life.

  • Martha Engel

    lol I love the “Fridge” one.

  • “The social media public” isn’t exactly how I’d describe Erik Spiekermann in this context… He pointed to this text by Gerry Leonidas on what’s wrong with the logo (and personally I would tend to agree as well, as much as I like Futura when used appropriately): https://medium.com/@gerryleonidas/all-trousers-no-legs-f866240c0b4b

    • James Mahoney

      All of Gerry Leonidas’s points are well-taken, and it’s indisputable that good typography elevates the visual experience and the distinctiveness of logotypes (though the great majority of people wouldn’t be able to identify exactly why some text looks better than average).

      And he’s dead-on accurate in his observation that the best results often come when the creative execution flows from early involvement in the brief.

      Nevertheless, and specifically as it relates to the Googles of the world, I’m reminded of the Mark Twain quotation, “My books are like water; those of the great geniuses are like wine. (Fortunately), everybody drinks water.” He could have said the same about typography or design in general.

  • stevebaird

    I’m so thankful for the willingness of so many of our really smart readers to share their wisdom and valuable opinions with others in this place.