Middlebury and Facebook Take Down Chermayeff & Geismar


Perhaps inspired in part by the legendary London Logo Fracas of ’07, Middlebury College students Sarah Franco and Alex Benepe got 700 students to sign a Facebook petition named Just Say No to the Middlebury Logo (those of you on Facebook, enjoy). The beauty of it, kids, is that the logo in question was designed by none other than the usually moving Ivan Chermayeff and Tom Geismar. Just some of the choice comments:

It looks like clip art. It’s a *blue* leaf. It looks like ——- (insert: Toronto Maple Leafs, Canada, Mr. Sneeze, Money, and the largest cash crop in Vermont). It’s corporate. It doesn’t remind me of shelter, renewal, and what-have-you. It doesn’t tell me a thing about Middlebury College. It looks like a Star of David. It’s “LAME.” It looks like something I could draw. I could do it better. It’s too expensive.

As you may have guessed, the college withdrew the logo and replaced it with a “revised and modernized” Latin academic seal (also designed by C&G). While they emerged victorious, this was not, the organizers claim, their original intent:

“I started a Facebook.com group for the sheer purpose of sharing this logo with my Middlebury friends and poking fun at it,” said Franco, adding, “This was purely selfish and not at all altruistic. It wasn’t even my intention to stop the logo.”

Spoken like a true design blogger in the making.

Thank you Christopher Simmons.