I might be causing a bit of controversy here (so it’s just as well nobody reads this) when I say that I’m quite content to see the rebranding going on at Imperial. Saying that I am happy is a different matter (nobody paid me millions to do it, unfortunately), but in contrast to a commonly held attitude among the more vocal of Imperial students, I don’t have much to gripe about.
The name change is fairly reasonable. It’s now "Imperial College London", with the preferred shortened version as simply "Imperial", whereas it used to be either "IC", or "Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine". Or, if you want to keep track of the newest ventures in what is supposed to be a university soley for science and technology, it could have been called "Imperial College of Science, Technology, Medical Sciences, Agriculture Sciences, Business Sciences and Engineering Sciences", or something similar. So long as people don’t use "ICL", or start messing around with punctuation (what a bunch of dipsticks, by the way), then I’ll be fine with it.
As for the visual branding, I didn’t have that much of an issue with the old colours, but I didn’t particularly like the college logo (a coat of arms of some sort). Too old fashioned, too fiddly for webpages and rugby shirts, and should have been kept as a coat of arms or crest, instead of being used as the day to day logo of the University. (For those of you not at Imperial, we’re the second best university in Britain, but like to confuse all and sundry by calling ourselves a college, when we aren’t.) Unfortunately, the new brand doesn’t have a logo at all, which is highly unusual. We really need something for rugby shirts and memorabilia, where just writing "Imperial College London", in Arial, would look a bit lame.
Signage : if people have any complaints about putting ‘sticky backed plastic’ posters over the old signs, then I’m open to suggestions about a better way of doing it. Waiting until each sign needs replacing could take decades and would make the rebranding awfully patchy, replacing every sign immediately would cost thousands. Surely covering over the old signs is a good compromise (and it looks fine to me).
I’m not that bothered about the changes from ic.ac.uk to imperial.ac.uk, since it’ll hopefully stop the geeky ick-ack-uck way of saying things – it’s really geeky, since it’s only if you already recognise it that you know what it means. For anyone outside the academic community, then the new one will be easier to remember, since it has more meaning to them. Clapping yourself on the back for spotting obscure occurences of the old form (like in the IC directory) is fairly lame, but it seems that some people think it makes them far better than whoever is trying to organise the huge changeover. Grow up, kiddy-winkles.
On an aside, this is the longest ever weblog entry – I started writing it five hours ago, but got bored half way through, wandered off, and I’ve just finished it now since I’m going to bed. Sweet dreams.