After a huge outcry against the new logo developed for the University of California, officials announced in a statement Friday they've decided to suspend its use for the time being.
"[W]hile I believe the design element in question would win wide acceptance over time, it also is important that we listen to and respect what has been a significant negative response by students, alumni and other members of our community," said Daniel M. Dooley, senior vice president for external relations at the UC Office of the President. "Therefore, I have instructed the communications team to suspend further use of the monogram. For certain applications, this process could require a measure of time to complete. In due course, we will re-evaluate this element of the visual identity system."
More than 54,000 people signed an online petition calling for UC to ditch the new logo. Local newspapers were seemingly unable to find any students or alumni supportive of the modern look and Twitter and Reddit played host to a wealth of criticism.
Even California's Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom was opposed to it, telling UC President Mark Yudof in a letter: "Instead of being creative with the University of California logo we should be searching for creative solutions for funding the University of California."
Dooley said the controversy "created a major distraction" from the university's public relations department's core mission. He also insisted the new logo was never intended to replace the official seal on diplomas and other documents:
Rather, it was to provide a graphic cue to distinguish systemwide communications materials from those of individual campuses. The monogram was only a piece of the visual identity system — a new approach to typography, photography, colors and the like — that was developed by UCOP design staff.
UC took down a sleek video produced and posted to Vimeo to promote the new look. The Daily Californian, the Berkeley campus newspaper, reported the school has used the logo for over a year, but it wasn't until recently, when the promotional video surfaced, that people took notice.