Elon Musk has unveiled a new Twitter logo, opting for a “minimalist art deco” X as part of the platform’s rebranding. The design would be changed, according to the Twitter owner, who tweeted that it “probably changes later, certainly will be refined.” Twitter’s CEO, Linda Yaccarino announced the decision on 24/07/2023 Monday by tweeting the design and commenting, “X is here! Let’s get started.”
X is here! Let’s do this. pic.twitter.com/1VqEPlLchj
— Linda Yaccarino (@lindayacc) July 24, 2023
Musk had solicited design proposals from his 149 million followers. It appeared to have chosen a logo he had identified on Sunday via a flickering video posted on his Twitter feed.
The “X” has long been Musk’s fixation, and it is the name of an “everything app” that he has promised to publish at some time, with Twitter being the most likely vehicle. Musk called Twitter “an accelerant to creating X, the everything app” just before purchasing it in October.
Musk acquired Twitter in October of last year and renamed X Corp, whose parent company is X Holdings Corp. This month, Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced the formation of xAI, a new artificial intelligence business.
The crowdsourced logo was released on Twitter by Sawyer Merritt, the co-founder of a sustainable clothing company, who noted that the font was used for a now-defunct podcast. The logo is based on Unicode, an international industrial standard for encoding text characters for them to be shown online.
— Sawyer Merritt (@SawyerMerritt) July 23, 2023
The Twitter logo is based on a Unicode font named Blackboard Bold, which raises the question of whether the logo can be copyrighted or trademarked.
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“Companies usually spend large sums of money designing a unique logo to stand out from the crowd, so choosing a standard character that anyone else can use seems very peculiar,” said Alan Woodward, a professor of cybersecurity at Surrey University.
The X concept is based on WeChat, a Chinese network that allows users to communicate, order taxis, and pay bills. In June last year, Musk reportedly told Twitter employees, “You live on WeChat in China.” We’ll succeed significantly if we can replicate that with Twitter.”
Yaccarino provided some clues about how she expects X to operate on Sunday, tweeting that the company will be AI-powered and “centred on audio, video, messaging, payments/banking.” The desktop version of Twitter showed the new logo instead of its trademark bird symbol as of Monday morning, and the main Twitter account was moved to the X brand.
The rebranding has already begun at Twitter’s headquarters in San Francisco, where the business has projected the X logo on and throughout the building, and conference rooms have been renamed with terms that incorporate the letter, X.
One analyst warned that the rebranding move was high-risk given Twitter’s competitive outlook, which is suffering financially due to advertiser spending cuts and the appearance of a “Twitter killer” rival dubbed Threads, launched by Mark Zuckerberg’s Meta.