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Chris Cardell

Google… leader in favicon publicity

A favicon is a small 16×16 icon that displays itself in a web browsers address bar and tab beside to the page title. Only Google could create a frenzy over a favicon. Back in June 2008 their favicon was redesigned, transforming from a capital ‘G’ to a more elegant lower case ‘g’, this time they’ve added a little colour.

TechCrunch, one of the Internet’s most visited tech blogs with almost 2 million readers posted the ‘story‘ today. Some TechCrunch readers were confused as to why it had been considered newsworthy by Jason Kincaid. One reader stated,

“Yep this is the state of art in journalism nowadays. Maybe TC reporters should now stand outside sergei’s / larry’s office and report when they walked out to pee!

Absolute rubbish.”

In fact, it is completely newsworthy (ok, not completely). For starters, what an earth made Google choose such a vibrant icon. Instead of emphasising the ‘g’, it hides it. Google’s design mantra is centred around simplicity and elegance, which its previous favicon was. This icon will be seen by millions of people everyday, the decision to use this specific icon wouldn’t have been taken likely.

Google Favicons

(If the favicon hasn’t updated in your browser, this is because the old favicon is still stored in your cache. Deleting your cache will remedy this.)

Did Google create such a controversial icon to generate media attention. Do they even need the media attention?

Marissa Mayer who announced the updated favicon in June 2008 stated,

“By no means is the one you’re seeing our favicon final; it was a first step to a more
unified set of icons. However, we really value feedback from users and want to hear your ideas that we may have missed. If you have your own notions about the Google favicon, please send them to us.”

André Resende had his own notions and sent in his favicon idea, the favicon that Google is now using is a refined version of André’s creation. Well done André!

This entry was posted on Saturday, January 10th, 2009 at 12:44 am GMT. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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