Yahoo’s logo gets a modern redesign


The "Yahoo" sign, which overlooks the I-80 freeway from 6th St. is dismantled, Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2011 in downtown San Francisco. (Michael Macor/AP)
August 7, 2013

Yahoo announced Wednesday that it’s changing its logo in an attempt to reflect the shifts that have swept through the company in the year since chief executive Marissa Mayer took the helm.

But before unveiling the final product — which still will be purple, accompanied by the company’s signature yodel, and will tote its official exclamation point — the company is taking users on a 30-day spin through some other logo alternatives.

“Beginning now, we will display a variation of the logo on our homepage and throughout our network in the U.S. for the next month,” the company’s chief marketing officer Kathy Savitt said in a blog post. “It’s our way of having some fun while honoring the legacy of our present logo.”

As for the final logo, Yahoo is only saying it will be “more reflective of our reimagined design and new experiences.”

The logo Yahoo is showing off on Day One has the company name in a slimmer, sans-serif font, similar to the fonts that other companies such as Microsoft, Google and Apple have used to signal a clean, modern look to their products.

Of course, there’s no telling where Yahoo’s logo will end up.

Changing a logo can be a very dicey thing for a company, which may be the reason behind Yahoo’s decision to ease its users into the idea first. When Gap redid its logo in 2010 and ditched its iconic blue box, shoppers were so unhappy that the retailer reversed course within a week.

Then again, not all logo changes make a splash. Microsoft introduced its first new logo in 25 years last August, opting for a cleaner, upright font and adding a squared-off Windows logo, and there was very little discussion about the tech titan’s decision.

Still, picking a new logo is a good way for Yahoo and Mayer to signal that the company is working to revamp itself inside and out. For those watching Mayer’s mounting list of acquisitions — social browser Rockmelt became the 21st Yahoo acquisition under Mayer last week — it’s clear that she’s setting up big changes for the company that go way beyond skin-deep.

Hayley Tsukayama covers consumer technology for The Washington Post.
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