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Old 09-13-2009, 07:06 PM   #1
Steven Lyle Jordan
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SJB creates/adopts a new ePub logo

For quite some time now, fans of the Open E-book format, OEB, or ePub, have been begging to see some serious branding and marketing of the format in public and commercial circles. It is the feeling of many that pushing the brand out there will get more people in-line with ePub, which is already on the way to becoming an international e-book format standard.

However, no branding, promotion or logos have been forthcoming from the International Digital Publishing Forum (IDPF), creators of ePub. This has left many of us OEB fans seeking ways of contributing to the effort of branding ePub, and being the design-minded person that I am, I have been toying with a brand logo for the OEB format for a while now. My work has finally resulted in a logo which I will start using on SteveJordanBooks.com, wherever the ePub format is offered.


The two main elements are the clearly iconic book pages, and the circle which partially encloses the book. The circle also happens to emulate an "O", for "open," the first word in the official format name of Open E-book, or OEB. However, the circle also iconically (albeit abstractly) represents a portal or container, enclosing or encapsulating what is inside... the electronic "container" for the book. The book page clearly extends itself from the container, suggesting availability and readability from the container. And finally, the container itself is "open" at the top, suggesting an open and unencumbered container which holds the book.

This logo is designed to have a truly international scope by avoiding letters or words common to any particular language... it is iconic, designed to be recognizable to anyone from any culture. Although some may wish to see the acronym "ePub" somewhere in the logo, it is not an absolute necessity for a logo's purposes... in addition, the phrase "ePub" does not directly translate into a recognizable series of words in a language other than English, so it should not be used in an international application.

The design is intentionally timeless, neither presenting a futuristic or "electronic" look, nor an ancient look harkening back to leatherbound tomes. It could as easily have been designed a decade from now, or redesigned from a century-old logo. This also leaves the design open to reinterpretation in the future, while still maintaining its essential elements and form.

This logo is identifiable in its rendered two colors, or in a black silouhette, making it easily transferable to iconic use on solid surfaces (such as stamping), and it is clear at any size, making it useful for major or background branding applications. It can even be reproduced in a rough fashion, even quickly hand-drawn, and still be recognizable to others. All of this makes the logo easy to use in any medium, in any application, in any culture or language.

This logo is intended either to be the prototype of the OEB logo, or a device used to inspire others to create a logo. The intention is a final logo that will be acceptable to the public, commercial and business entities, the bookselling industry, and the IDPF. If, by that definition, the logo I have presented here is considered successful and desirable, I would grant its use as a worldwide symbol, abandoning all demands to rights or restrictions to the design. If, however, it is superceded by a logo of some other person's design, which is in turn acceptable to all parties, I would retain the rights to this logo, to use as I see fit elsewhere. I invite comment (in this thread or directly to me), debate, recommendation or endorsement of this logo by any and all interested parties.
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Old 09-13-2009, 07:53 PM   #2
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I'm only giving my opinion from the point of view of a consumer with no tech experience....

The first thing that struck me, when I saw the logo, was the large "O". I immediately associated it with "open". That may be because I am a member of MR and am familiar with DRM and DRM free formats.

Your comments about not adding ePub on the book make sense. A consumer would only have to learn what a symbol represents to quickly recognize and identify it on other sites (like learning what the adobe pdf symbol means).

I also like that the symbol would be clear either in color or B and W plus recognizable in various sizes.

That's my little ole 2 cents worth.. Good Job.
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Old 09-13-2009, 08:12 PM   #3
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Very nice! It looks like it would render well in any color combo, or lack thereof.
So Steve, where would you incorporate the logo in your books --- on a frontispiece?
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Old 09-14-2009, 12:03 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dreams View Post
The first thing that struck me, when I saw the logo, was the large "O". I immediately associated it with "open". That may be because I am a member of MR and am familiar with DRM and DRM free formats.
That was exactly where the inspiration came from... the connection to the format name "Open E-Book," and the obvious connotation. (It occurred to me later that the circle could even be closed, to represent a DRM-secured file. Hopefully something we will never see...)

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Originally Posted by Timoleon View Post
So Steve, where would you incorporate the logo in your books --- on a frontispiece?
No reason you couldn't add the logo to a book cover or inside page, if the book specifies its format somewhere within. Presently, I don't put format logos on or in my books, but I've already added the logo to my website wherever OEB files are offered.
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Old 09-14-2009, 07:05 AM   #5
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I like it.

I see the background matches your web site page background colour. Presumably the logo itself has a transparent background?

Do you have a vector version of the logo? Having an SVG version for use in ePubs would be good.



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Old 09-14-2009, 09:46 AM   #6
Steven Lyle Jordan
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I like it.

I see the background matches your web site page background colour. Presumably the logo itself has a transparent background?

Do you have a vector version of the logo? Having an SVG version for use in ePubs would be good.
I created the logo in Illustrator/Photoshop, so I can provide an SVG and transparent GIF version of it if needed. (FYI, I posted a white background version of the logo on the Teleread site. Some interesting comments are surfacing there, as well.)
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Old 09-14-2009, 10:31 AM   #7
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Attached is the transparent GIF version. (SVG won't upload through the MR tool, but I have one made.)
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Name:	epub_logoSJ_500.gif
Views:	134
Size:	8.4 KB
ID:	35836  
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Old 09-14-2009, 11:50 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Jordan View Post
Attached is the transparent GIF version. (SVG won't upload through the MR tool, but I have one made.)
Zip it and upload the .zip.

A black and white (and grey) version could be useful too.
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Old 09-14-2009, 12:27 PM   #9
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Attached: The zipped GIF, B/W GIF and SVG files.
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File Type: zip epub_logoSJ.zip (13.6 KB, 124 views)
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Old 09-14-2009, 01:58 PM   #10
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Suggested on the TeleRead forum: The addition of some designation for versions of OEB, so users can confirm that future versions of ePub will run on their devices (IOW, you won't buy a version 4 OEB file to read on a version 2 OEB reader, and find out it won't display properly).

Of course, presently there are no multiple versions... this is a consideration for the future, obviously. I suggested a series of white dots could be added to the body of the circle, one for version 1, two for version 2, etc, which should be understandable to anyone across cultures.

Adding the word "ePub" to the logo was also suggested, though I'm resistant to the idea of adding text that won't mean anything to non-English-speaking (or Alphanumeric-character-reading) cultures, of which there are a few.
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Old 09-14-2009, 02:21 PM   #11
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Until there's a new version of the OEB spec I don't think there's any point worrying about a new logo - there are lots of options for indicating versions, and I see no point in including anything in the first logo.

I agree with you that the logo should not contain any letters. Thanks for the SVG.

Quote:
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Suggested on the TeleRead forum: The addition of some designation for versions of OEB

[...]

Adding the word "ePub" to the logo was also suggested, though I'm resistant to the idea of adding text that won't mean anything to non-English-speaking (or Alphanumeric-character-reading) cultures, of which there are a few.
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