The Guy Who Designed The 2012 Olympics Logo (Reprise)

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I’m rethinking the previous post. How could be I so short-sighted not to see what a genius this guy is? He wasn’t drunk — he was brilliant!

He could have tried to design something that would capture the feel and set the tone for the 2012 Olympics. But, nooooo, he designed something so butt-ugly that it created more controversy — and publicity — than the 2012 Olympics could ever have generated otherwise.

The logo was announced less than 48 hours ago, and nearly everybody with access to the Internet (and everybody in the blogosphere) knows where the 2012 Olympics is going to be held.

Do you know where the 2008 and 2010 Olympics will be held? (Beijing and Vancouver). You probably had to think, didn’t you?

My take: Bad is the new good.

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10 thoughts on “The Guy Who Designed The 2012 Olympics Logo (Reprise)

  1. The logo is sick. It looks like it could be a Ramones or Sex Pistols poster or some throwback to the 80’s British punk movement. It is not representative of what I understood the Olympics to be about.
    Talk about missing the mark.
    I love how everyone but the Olympic committee hates it. They say it will attract a younger crowd. Unlikely. It may attract those who live in a Mel Gibsonesque fantasy of a post-apocalyptic Olympic games. But for the regular American family… sorry chaps. It was a swing and a miss.
    But what do I care, I don’t watch the Olympics anymore anyway

  2. I had no idea where the ’08 and ’10 Olympics were.

    You’re right on it working to spread the word. Maybe the lesson here is to be great at being great, or be great at sucking. Just don’t be average.

    The logo still sucks.

  3. Tony (?): Couldn’t agree more. What made me laugh/puke was the chairman’s comment: “it will…act as a reminder of our promise to use the Olympic spirit to inspire everyone and reach out to young people around the world. It is an invitation to take part and be involved.” Uh, right. I think it’s the first “2” in the logo that does that.

  4. The Olympics has, for some time, been losing a youth audience, such as Gen-X. That’s why, for instance, the IOC is adjusting and encouraging the development of the types of events you see to appeal to more action-oriented competitons, particularly with bulk starts. I don’t know what the design brief was for the 2012 Games, but you can be assured that it was detailed, well-thought out and based on a good deal of solid market research.

    Does the design work on that level? Don’t ask me, I’m to old to be in the target market. Ask a Gen-X marketer. My hunch is that they love it.

  5. “Bad is the new good.” Very funny. Maybe that’s another suggestion for a Seth Godin book.

    This makes me think of the “Cocaine Energy Drink.”

    http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/breakingnews/world/view_article.php?article_id=65515

    The new “Bad to Good” strategy: Create a controversy centering around a weird or crappy idea, get tons of press, then go with the REAL brand and tell everyone you’re a responsive company concerned with others feelings. It’s actually a great strategy if you’ve got the courage to pull it off. Although I don’t think anyone has ever really done it on purpose.

    My prediction: The 2012 logo will be redesigned.

  6. Jeffry: We’re on the same page. When I first wrote this post, I wrote the following, but it hit the cutting room floor during editing:

    “I hope that the British, to demonstrate their superior comedic talent and sense of humor, will trash the logo, and say ‘and now for something completely different….’ “

  7. Peter: I can’t comment on the design brief, and, of course, it’s just my opinion that the logo is ugly. But if you look at my response back to Tony, that’s the part I have trouble with. I don’t care who the target audience is — how does the logo “act as a reminder of our promise to use the Olympic spirit to inspire everyone”?

  8. In defence (that’s British spelling) of the logo:

    http://coudal.com/olympics.php

    Their arguments in support of the logo are actually quite compelling. I just wish the rationale was being applied to a different logo.

    Interesting to note: You can sure drive a ton of traffic to your blog simply saying you like the London 2012 logo.

  9. Peter – I am a Gen-X marketer (well at least I fall into the age demographic and participate in the activities). I find the logo to be patronizing. It’s like when I was a kid and would skateboard in the driveway and my mom would tell me that I was “Rad”. It made my skin crawl to here her say that as it didnt ring as true as when my buddies would say the same thing. It had the same creepy feeling as if she would try to tell me about sex – it just felt wrong and uncomfortable.

    Adults always suffer the liability of credibility when addressing the youth market. A more appropriate logo may have been a drawing of a female athlete with a black eye and a bit of snowrash on her arm with a punk rock hairdo, baggy clothes, sipping a redbull (sponsorship?) sitting on her snowboard with a disinterested look. That is your modern (Gen-Y) youth. They play hard and don’t care who thinks they are cool (or at least they like to pretend so). They are looking for a place to belong, without losing their individuality.

    This 2012 logo is garbage and will do nothing to attract the Gen-X or the Gen-Y crowd. The kids today are more sophisticated than that. This is the same as putting extra vitamins and caffeine in milk and calling it “Super X Juice” and expecting the kids to put down their redbull for “the healthy alternative”. They might pour it into the fruitloops in the morning, but they will not be drinking it in front of their friends.

    The issue with the Olympics is not the logo, its the content. So few kids in the US care about tumbling, hurdles, cross country skiing. We like to play sports more than be a spectator. If we are going to watch it needs to be non stop action. Have a parachuter jump from a plane with a shotgun and shoot skeet while falling to earth – I would watch that. watching guys on bicycles run in circles, doesn’t get my adrenaline pumping.

    In this case, content trumps packaging. And the packaging sucks.

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