Before I start I’d like to note that this article contains information about the redesign mixed with my own personal opinion all in one beautiful logo stew. If you’d like to read an article that keeps opinion at bay I recommend you check out this article from our friends over at the Argus first.
So Wesleyan got a new logo. You’ve probably heard about it. You probably also saw the all-school email President Michael Roth sent out where he described the redesign as, “Putting forward Wesleyan’s best self.” Needless to say, there weren’t many around who would agree it achieved that goal.
This redesign is so big there’s no clear place to start. So maybe we can start by noting how Roth told the school in the state of the school address that he doesn’t consider it a logo.
Set to Bear Hands’ “Belonging,” the video offers a bite-size overview of the dizzying array of music and public life (woah!) on display, with an admirable focus on all the groovy dancing happening during Bear Hands’ set, which somehow never manages to fall in sync with the “Belongings” soundtrack. It was screened for your parents at the unexpectedly political Parents’ Assembly during Homecoming Weekend, and now it’s floating around the Wesleyan main page and Connection, with this blurb attached to it:
This one’s got it all: welcome packets, an impromptu “Go Wes!”, a multi-state license plate montage, families dragging luggage into Clark, frosh stating their place of origin (“It’s just outside Boston”), a family of Wes grads, and this piece of advice from an RA: “My first year I didn’t do anything. Make sure you do everything!” It’s only missing some shots of President Roth high-fiving the Wes cardinal, but this photo will have to do.
On a semi-related note, an anonymous student dropped this note in Wesleying’s tipbox:
Judging by the initial reactions of the people in the administration who were involved (defensive irritation from Assistant Dean of Admissions Tara Lindros, ambivalence from President Michael Roth), they assumed that our vehement outrage would naturally simmer down to latent resentment over time.
0))) ’10 just posted something brilliant over at AuralWes. I think you should go and participate. There are some dark, hilarious places in the picture-bowels of facebook…. I will summarize/ copy paste here:
here’s the deal: if you think the new admissions site is totally fucking stupid, condescending, and more than a bit disingenuous, you can create your own alternative! find your favorite wasteyface, shit-disturbing, or otherwise seedy photos of yourself and then head on over to icanhascheezburger.com. once there you can use their “advanced lolbuilder” to caption anything you want…however you want…in that iconic lolcat font we all love. SO, AURALWES IS HAVING OUR FIRST CONTEST EVAAR!!!11! (omfg)
Make your BEST para-admissions picture and send it over to firstname.lastname@example.org
(on a side note, is anyone starting to think that, far from being a misguided attempt at making our HAWT SCHOOL look good, the new admissions website is actually some kind of guerilla genius instigation of this kind of mockery? they are getting so much play out of this.)
The Wesleyan website has been needing an overhaul for awhile, and after yesterday’s unveiling, it clearly got a major one. It seems more functional than it used to be, and it looks easier to find things than before. It’s more interactive – this Academic Sampler thing is cool.
But why is the entire site now an Admissions brochure? I wasn’t aware that we need to recruit new talent this desperately.
The real big problem is the ill-advised “Are You Wesleyan?” series on the Admissions page, a series of trite rhetorical questions that are supposed to define our exceptional Wesleyan character. Or reveal our gloriously unique lack of definition, or something.
It’s more than a matter of taste. Yes, it’s clearly lame and makes Wesleyan students sound like tools. But moreover, it’s just trying way too hard. Why are you trying so hard, Admissions? It’s unseemly.
Applications are at a record high, and we already have a bigger draw than our peer institutions. Over the past few years Wesleyan has somehow greatly increased its cachet among applicants, without marketing itself as aggressively (and, well, desperately) as this Admissions page does.
Don’t mess with that! Whatever we’ve been doing has clearly been working. Advertising this blatant and un-self-aware will definitely not make Wes any more desirable than it already is to prospective students, and may well turn away those interesting, intellectually engaged applicants whose sensibilities are assaulted by the infuriatingly eager tone this site is trying to hustle them with.
Twitter-bound Wesleyanites have started a sweet hashtag based on our brilliant new redesign and the very, very dramatic slogans encapsulated therein. (nano twitter tutorial: hashtags are essentially a way of categorizing tweets based on a common feature or meme.) the hashtag is #iamwesleyan.
Some choice examples:
Would you stay up all night…. just to read an anonymous confession board?
Do most of your contacts…. have hyphenated last names?
Are you prepared…. to change your sexuality?
Do you contemplate infinity…. just for the fun of it? Do you contemplate infinity…. just for the fun of it…. ON WEED?