Our Opinion: City should capitalize on interest in logoPublished 9:18am Wednesday, April 23, 2014
The Austin City Council informally agreed to push back its efforts to find a new city logo. After all the attention this issue has received, we disagree with the council and feel they should rectify the situation sooner rather than later.
We supported the council’s decision to vote down the “talent packed” logo created by a branding committee under Vision 2020 earlier this month. That logo received overwhelmingly negative feedback from the public and spurred conversation on how best to represent Austin.
Yet the council and Mayor Tom Stiehm said the public would have a chance to weigh in on the process through a community poll or logo contest.
That’s a great way to get Austinites involved in helping the city form a new brand, something Vision 2020 and the city were trying to accomplish when they created a branding campaign more than a year ago. Holding a contest within the next few months would engage residents and show the city is willing to work with residents who may not be affiliated with Vision 2020 to accomplish the same goals.
Yet a majority of the council agreed to let the issue die for a few months, ostensibly to let the issue fade from the spotlight so the public will stop getting so riled up.
That’s a poor decision. People are interested in the issue now, and the city won’t have as much feedback if they decide to wait until the end of the year or later to address a new logo. The logo is the start of a larger brand campaign Vision 2020 volunteers hoped to put together to draw in more people and businesses, something the council had as a priority in 2013. Why stop momentum toward that goal now that you have it?
Stiehm has previously said the city could address the logo issue as soon as its website redesign is complete. That could take place as early as the fall, and we hope it is completed sooner rather than later. If the city has this much engagement over the issue now, then the council should strike while the attention’s hot and get the public involved in discussions over the city’s logo.