Slack, the workplace chat app that plans to become a public company this year, is making a new marketing push that includes an updated logo. The multicolor hashtag logo of yore has been replaced by something that more closely resembles a pinwheel, while retaining the basic color palette. The lowercase “slack” wordmark also appears to have gotten a minor update.
The company needed to change the logo because the old one was extremely problematic, the company said in a blog post.
It was also extremely easy to get wrong. It was 11 different colors—and if placed on any color other than white, or at the wrong angle (instead of the precisely prescribed 18º rotation), or with the colors tweaked wrong, it looked terrible. It pained us.
The company added that it would “not bore [us] with the design thinking and the meaning of every angle and curve of the new logo.” So, feel free to project any feelings you have about Slack onto the new logo and wordmark.
Slack, which has more than 8 million daily users, expects its revenue to grow 64 percent this year to $640 million, The Information reported this week. The company is mounting a new marketing campaign describing the app as “where work happens.”
I’ve been feeling down on Slack ever since my colleagues at The Verge, which runs on Slack, created a channel called verge-internet for discussing the internet. We already had a channel to discuss tech (verge-tech), and a channel for longer tech discussions (verge-tech-discuss), and a channel for discussing culture (verge-culture). Wasn’t our whole website about the internet? Why did our internet website need an internet discussion forum separate from the many other forums in which we discuss the internet?
More and more, people would drop a link in one channel, only to be told that it was being discussed in several other channels. The ease of use that made Slack popular — any user can create any channel, within seconds, for any reason — had also made my workplace feel like an infinitely fractal series of impenetrable silos.
Slack did not cause any of this behavior, but it does enable it.
I’ve also been thinking about how the app demands my continuous partial attention, in ways that feel hostile to any sort of deep work, and go far beyond the attention requirements of email, the app that Slack noisily promised to displace.
None of these feelings are really conveyed by the new logo.
But there is a new ad campaign for it, as you may have seen in The New Yorker this week.
Slack co-founder Stewart Butterfield predicted a wide range of reactions to the logo:
I think the new logo is fine! But logos are meant to be angrily discussed in the comments. Please leave yours below.