September 11 Digital Archive

[MAPC-discuss] MAPC Logo Design -- Graphics, Symbolism, and


[MAPC-discuss] MAPC Logo Design -- Graphics, Symbolism, and



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September 11 Email: Body

Hi all!

Just a heads up that the MAPC logo will be on the agenda for Tuesday night's
general membership meeting, and a few comments (okay, I lied - lots of
comments) since I may not be able to attend the whole meeting.

While (AFAIK) we've never voted on this, the peace sign wrapped around the
globe has become the de facto MAPC logo.  (IIRC the general membership
referred the logo question back to the Arts & Culture WG, and they couldn't
come up with anything better.)

The Student/Youth Caucus has objected to this logo, and designed a new one,
which will be presented on Tuesday.  (As I understand it, the problem is
that the peace sign is tied to a particular historic era, and carries
baggage which is too hippie-ish -- as opposed to activist.  There is also
concern that the grey-scale of the logo does not reduce or reproduce well.)
Their proposed logo has a half-globe, without peace sign, with paler images
of the globe radiating out from it.  (Lousy description, I know.)

I sympathize with the S/YC's objections, but I like their proposed graphic
even less than the one we've been using.  To me, it's not particularly
distinctive, and a globe alone just doesn't say "peace" to me.  It could
just as easily be the logo graphic for a global telecommunications

Then again, I'm not sure that any graphic we pick to represent
"peace/anti-war" will be acceptable to and truly representative of the whole
Coalition.  The Vietnam-era peace sign is, well, Vietnam era, and doesn't
represent the new generation of activists.  The dove has a longer history,
but strikes me as a bit too "Pacifist" in image, as does the rifle with a
flower in its barrel, broken rifle, broken bomb, and a few others.  The
other predominant image from the Vietnam era, the clenched fist, of course,
has the opposite connotation.  We've already been through the discussion of
incorporating the symbolism of the American flag; some of us think "peace is
patriotic" and others of us think U.S. nationalism is part of the problem.
And while the globe could well be something that none of us object to, it
really doesn't symbolize anything that distinguishes us from the other side.

"Madison area" is tough to symbolize graphically.  The most identifiable
symbols are architectural (the State Capitol), and we have nothing to do
with state government.  Doing something with the outline of the state and
highlighting the Madison area really doesn't work graphically.  And I doubt
that anyone would recognize that a satellite view of the Four Lakes was
anything other than a Rorschach inkblot test.

We could try to have a symbol for everyone, incorporating lots of different
images in the logo, but the result would likely be an unwieldy mess.

My personal opinion at this point is that we should either (1)come up with a
graphic that is brand new -- no baggage from past movements or ideologies --
(and I have no earthly idea what this would be); or (2) just go with a
"words-only" logo, using a very distinctive typestyle and arrangement of the
words in our organization name.  If the typestyle and arrangement are
distinctive enough, IMO the logo will be recognizeable and identifiable, and
would avoid the symbolism & baggage problems inherent in selecting any
graphic image for a diverse coalition.


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September 11 Email: Date

Monday, November 12, 2001 8:51 PM

September 11 Email: Subject

[MAPC-discuss] MAPC Logo Design -- Graphics, Symbolism, and


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