Data giant Seagate has a new “living logo.” It’s animated. It swirls. It grooves. It is kinda neat. And oh yeah, they’d like a patent please.

The first few weeks of the New Year and the conga-line of rebrands is underway for 2015 (ICYMI here’s the top 50 logo redesigns of 2014.) First out of the gate is data and storage giant Seagate with a new logo and a gimmick that they’re so enamored with, they’ve got a patent-pending on it. They’re calling it a “Living Logo.”

“What’s that?” you may ask.

Here’s the short and skinny from official company press releases:

“The focus of the new Seagate brand is the “Living Logo”, which will showcase data as a living, vibrant thing that powers human invention, culture and advances. Through a partnership with Getty Images, Seagate will be able to use the logo on its website to tell an infinite number of visual stories about topics such as technology pioneers and breakthroughs in human history. The Living Logo itself represents new patent-pending software technology and will be the focus of a national awareness campaign backed by Seagate’s largest marketing investment ever.”

Here’s the side-by-each of the old and the new:
new old seagate logosAgency: Goodby Silverstein & Partners

So You Think You Know LogosThe logo itself is fine but not a particularly dramatic departure from their previous one (I might even like their old logo a little better.) The idea behind the “Living Logo” thingy is, on the surface anyway, kinda neat (the ad guys that sold Seagate on the the idea must have had a hearty round of high-fives) but marketing hype aside, it’s not actually the logo that Seagate wants a patent for. It’s the software that displays the data stream, something they might license to other companies and licensing things requires IP protection.

Logos that move.

While animated logos have always been well suited to a digital environment, Twitter and Facebook‘s resistance to animated .gifs – neither of them want to appear like some internet bazaar with blinking, flashing graphics cluttering up the landscape – will limit implementation for the time being. There’s apps that can be used to distribute the interface, but that’s hardly ubiquitous and for now, the “Living Logo” is only available on Seagate’s own website. Here’s some stills from that:
living logo frame set
Not sure if this is too gimmicky for any real traction or not – guess we’ll know in about six months whether this is the logo equivalent of “scratch and sniff” T-shirts. Truth to tell, this idea of “Living Logos” isn’t terribly new either, having been used to describe logos that feature different configurations for different applications.


With everybody trying to be different, rolling out logos that promised to be more that “just” logos, the notion of flexible, or “living” logos came into vogue a few years back; The City of Melbourne’s rebrand back in 2009 is one example that comes to mind. Google is another. On sure, this particular “Living Logo” is a fancy-pants animated logo with dynamically loaded images and what-not on a web page. But that’s just this one place and NOT every instance of the logo, which is technically just like every logo in existence. A so-so giant “S” icon because the company name is Seagate.

Anyhoo, and all cynicism aside, here the new Seagate “Living Logo” in all its swirly, animated .gif glory.
Seagate Living logo animation

For the real McCoy, mosy on over to the Seagate website.