A question is baffling me since a week or two… Are we measuring the words “equal” and “different” depending only on the context?
Fact: PayPal sued Pandora over alleged similarities in the two logos.
Now, let’s be honest, first of all we are not talking about the logotypes but the monograms. The logotypes are totally different and the only thing the two monograms (or icons) have in common is to be missing the counter of the uppercase “P”.
But don’t take my word for it, take a short check list:
- PayPal monogram axe: slanted. Pandora: not.
- PayPal monogram corners: rounded. Pandora: one out of 4.
- PayPal proportions between stem and bowl: 1⁄2. Pandora: 1⁄3.
- PayPal drawing of the bowl: squared. Pandora: 180° rounded.
- PayPal shades of colour: #002f86 #009cde #012069. Pandora: #2f63ff #00a0ee.
- PayPal contents: two overlapping solid “Ps”. Pandora: 1 nuanced “P”.
So, unless PayPal has a trademark on any “P”, drawn without the counter, in any shade of blue. I believe this has nothing to do with plagiarism but with publicity. For both. In fact you can spot other logos (oops, monograms) around with the same exact “similarities”. No need to dig into your public library to look for logotype archives, first stop online: Logobook and you’ll find a couple of them. Then just keep searching the web and some even more interesting examples come out. Probably being the Portland Art Museum the most shiny.
Yes, it has been done before, the “window” logotype and all. So if PayPal was ok with using two counterless “Ps” when someone did that in 1981, and was ok living with a Museum doing exactly what Pandora is doing today, I believe we can move the conversation somewhere else.
That somewhere is… Why Pandora did that?
It has been discussed before, the logotype (the actual logotype) does not even have an uppercase “P”. Why going for that monogram? And that rounded corner, it doesn’t even share the same radius with the one of the descender “p” in the logotype, or does it? Let me check… It kind of does! If you consider the monogram being the missing uppercase of the logotype. Hmm… No, I am not convincing myself either.
Ok, but the colour is different. It is indeed, if you take the website, the logotype and the monogram/icon you have not one but three different blues than the ones PayPal is using. Bold colour scheme, sure.
To summarise, to someone Pandora monogram is very alike PayPal one. To someone else an all lowercase logotype can go together with a (different shade of blue) companion uppercase monogram. The world is an ever-changing beautiful place.