Top 10 Most Embarrassing Logo FAILS

Script written by Drew Brown.

Sometimes, some of the worst logo redesigns result in some funny company logos. Whether it’s the London 2012 Summer Olympics logo looking like something inappropriate from The Simpsons and almost causing a boycott, Vermont Pure Maple Syrup logo looking like a man urinating or the Kids Exchange logo forgetting the space between the words, these logo design disasters can certainly be considered corporate logo fails. WatchMojo counts down ten logo disasters that will crack you up.

Special thanks to our users drewbrown and Skrizzy for suggesting this idea! Check out the voting page at http://WatchMojo.comsuggest/Top%20Ten%20Logo%20Fails

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Script written by Drew Brown.


Look at this image; what do you see? Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Logo Fails.

For this list, we’re defining a fail as a logo that has, on the most epic level, taken attention away from the product or organization it represents, or led to embarrassment or financial loss – even if the products or services they represent are on the up-and-up. Please note: we’ve done our best to confirm that all of these logos are legit, but in some cases it’s possible it was just a fake that went viral – oh well, they’re still funny!

#10: Kudawara Pharmacy

Let’s say you’re a graphic designer for a Japanese pharmacy and they ask for a dynamic new logo. You’d think that one melding together your organization’s customer-centric philosophy and the first letter of its name would be a great idea. The good news is the two-stick-figure logo received global brand recognition from the likes of Huffington Post, BuzzFeed, and Business Insider, to name a few. The bad news is it’s because your logo looks like two people standing up and gettin’ down, if you know what we mean – let’s just say it’s referred to by some as “The Rear Admiral.” Perhaps Kudawara should’ve made lemons out of lemonade and focused on selling erectile dysfunction drugs…

#9: Vermont Pure Maple Syrup

Only the highest quality product gets Vermont’s Pure Maple Syrup label. Perhaps this slow, painstaking process doesn’t leave time for little things like noticing that their logo looks like a man relieving himself. To be fair, when you stick a tap in a tree and it drips, it’s going to look kinda funny. But, c’mon, Vermont: your state looks like the profile of a pair of beefy legs, and your northeast looks like a butt. Putting the spout right at the base of the hand-like Lake Champlain islands and adding a bucket below it is bound to elicit laughter. Even so, the logo remains a symbol for the highest quality syrup, so why should they change anything?

#8: Office of Government Commerce, United Kingdom

In 2008, it was reported that the UK’s Office of Government Commerce spent £14,000 to create a new logo. Unfortunately, when rotated 90 degrees, it looks like a person – or maybe a snowman? – engaging is self-gratification. The general public and news outlets noticed. An OGC spokesman responded, saying the logo, “caused a few titters among some staff.” However, they decided that any combo of the letters “OGC” would look halfway indecent, and that such a logo “was not inappropriate to an organization that’s looking to have a firm grip” on government spending. Riiiight. Three years later, the OGC was absorbed into another agency. We have to assume that maybe its demise was due, in part, to the gripping logo.

#7: Locum AB

Poor Locum. This Swedish property management firm was just trying to thank their customers and wish them a Happy Holidays, while in turn saving some trees, via an electronic Christmas card. To show their love, they replaced the “o” in their all lower-case logo with a heart. And it looks, at least to English speakers, like they are expressing a passion for a certain bodily fluid. Let’s face it: Locum is playing with fire just by having C-U-M as the last three letters of their name, and they poured gasoline on it by e-mailing out what would quickly become a viral sensation.

#6: Mont-Sat

It’s a bit unfair to go after a small, mom-and-pop satellite and antenna installation company in the Lower Silesia province of Poland. But if you’re going to humanize a satellite dish, you could have one very long problem… and Mont-Sat didn’t take that into account. In this anthropomorphized design, the satellite part known as the support arm is placed right above the legs. The result? He looks very happy to see us. But there’s something else about it. Usually, someone with this particular issue would do anything to make sure it is not seen. His hands are up and his tongue is out, however, and he’s seemingly very impressed with himself. Let’s just hope their in-home installers keep things classier.

#5: Kids Exchange

Kerning is the term used in typography to define the spacing between letters. Too much or too little space and readability suffers. But perhaps the greatest kerning cautionary tale is the alleged one-time logo for the Kids Exchange you’ve surely seen on lists like this before. First of all, care is warranted when the letters S, E, and X are clustered together in your organization’s name… especially when your business is focused on children’s items. Also, a person not versed in the laws and regulations of sexual reassignment might find it odd that kids can get a sex change down at their local strip mall. Calling anyone out there using this Kids Exchange logo: can you please just hit that space bar for us?

#4: London 2012 Summer Olympics

An Olympic logo can be a dynamic representation of the country and city hosting the games. Get it wrong, and oh boy… London’s 2012 logo cost a reported £400,000, and unfortunately that expenditure that didn’t help them avoid major headaches. Problems started back in 2007, when the UK organization Epilepsy Action reported complaints of seizures from animated footage promoting the logo. But that was only the start: Iran lodged a formal complaint saying the letters spelled “ZION” and threatened a boycott. And, as always, there’s the sexual connotation, with some saying it looked like Lisa Simpson giving Bart… uh, do we have to say it? Despite the criticism, the London organizers kept calm and carried on – logo and all.

#3: A-Style

Is it really a fail if they meant to do it? When A-Style founder Marco Bruns created his logo, there was no business idea, no product, no store… just a logo. You could say Bruns built his success through the backdoor, by affixing stickers of his doggy-style stick figures wherever he went, from Milan to Moscow to Miami. He also painted it on the track at the 2004 Tour de France. People noticed, and the brand grew. Now it’s years later, and A-Style sells clothes and accessories displaying their logo, worn by the likes of football megastar Lionel Messi and appearing on motorcycle helmets at MotoGP events. You could say A-Style is living by the mantra “no publicity is bad publicity.”

#2: Sunrise Sushi / Institute of Oriental Studies, Federal University of Santa Catarina

A sunrise over a pagoda can be a beautiful thing; it also can be very penetrating. Our #2 logo is shrouded in mystery: Who designed it? Who used it? Several sources attribute it to Sunrise Sushi, a restaurant that may or may not have been undone by its suggestive logo. The London Telegraph reported that the Federal University of Santa Catarina in Brazil used it to represent its Oriental Studies department, but withdrew it when the logo went viral. What we do know for sure is the pagoda is a mainstay on logo fails lists, with the UK’s Independent once placing among the worst logos to ever be designed. We also know why it became a viral sensation, and so do you.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable – or in this case dishonorable – mentions:
- Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics
- Wisconsin Tourism Federation
- Trump/Pence 2016 U.S. Presidential Campaign

#1: Catholic Church’s Archdiocesan Youth Commission

It was 1973, and the Archdiocesan Youth Commission, an organization within the Catholic Church, apparently started using this new logo. We should mention that, at the time, the only people privy to details about the Catholic abuse scandals were those within the inner circle of the church and, unfortunately, those who were exploited. It wasn’t until a groundswell of mistrust, and tenacious investigative journalism in the 2000s, that many very shocking truths were uncovered. And, according to a rumor perpetuated repeatedly online, the Archdiocesan Youth Commission was an unfortunate victim of the incident and the overnight meme-ification of found images. The Atlantic asked readers if this was the Worst Logo Ever. Even if this logo is a fake, the irony of the inappropriateness means that our answer is an emphatic yes.

Do you agree with our list? Which logo do you think is the biggest fail? For more fail-tastic top 10s published every day, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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