With so much swirling around about Yahoo over the past few days and weeks, we decided to do some digging into the past history of the famous tech company. One really interesting titbit that we discovered was surrounding the origins of Yahoo’s logo.
In 1968, Mad Magazine, which is an American humor comic series, released a book titled “The Indigestible MAD.” The series which originally started in 1952 in book form, later moved onto magazines which it is known for today. The fascinating thing about this book is that inside it there is a comic that was the inspiration for the Tech giant’s future famous logo. See it after the jump.
In a section called “The Lighter Side Of Dating,” pages 98-99 feature a creepy scenario where a boss decides to inform his secretary that they’re going to dinner together. This was published in
1968 1963 and the joke has not aged well. After repeated attempts to act uninterested, the secretary finally agrees to go on the date. Once the boss goes back into the office and slams the door shut, the secretary shouts with joy exclaiming, “YAHOO!” See the full pages below.
Yahoo’s logo today and the one they originally used in 1996 is virtually identical minus a drop shadow and some pixels. It’s an impressive feat that the logo has remained consistent and lasted for this long. But when you take a closer look at Yahoo’s logo today (or 1996) against the comic in the 1963 Mad Magazine, the similarities are astounding. The fonts in both are nearly identical and the positioning of the “A” and “H” in both logos are also nearly identical. But perhaps the most obvious ripoff is the fact that the exclamation points are exactly the same. While Mad Magazine’s 1963 version is more dramatically tilted to the right, the yahoo logo appears right leaning even today.
Pictured below is also the scan of the front and back cover of this edition. Ultimately I’m not sure what’s stranger, the fact that they copied their design from a 1960′s Mad Magazine for the logo that still remains today, or that they copied it from a cartoon about a boss pressuring his secretary to go on a date with him. Either way, it’s more insight into the company that’s doing everything they can to stay above water.
Thanks to Jo for helping me figure this out.
Updated: One commenter who knows about 10x more about Mad Magazine than I do gave a great explanation about how the early publishing of the product worked.
Update #2: Another commenter found a link to the iterations of the Yahoo logo over time since 1995. The earliest logo I could find from the WayBack Machine was from 1996. Either way it doesn’t change much as the 1995 logo was almost identical to the Purple logo that I featured above, but it does provide more context.