So my lawyer called me up the other day with interesting news.. "Your trademark application for concrete5(tm) is going well, you're gonna be able to turn that TM into a little R with a circle any day, just get that c5 crap off of your website."
"Muhhh???" I thought. ‘That c5 crap' is pretty much everywhere. Not only does it show up more often than "concrete5″, but it is a really nice way to shorten the brand when you're writing copy. It's elemental, and since we're a building material for the web we all kinda liked that. Moreover I've got 4000 stickers and a huge pile of screwdrivers with that on there.. generally, a shocker…
Sadly, it quickly became clear my lawyer was right. C5 as a brand is a mess. A simple google search turns up dozens of different things that are "c5″… a Citron car, a Lockheed jet, countless consultants – the list goes on and on and includes a certain software company in Redmond Washington that has a product called Microsoft Dynamics C5, which of course they've protected in every way money can buy. Woooops.
I think it's pretty clear we're not trying to ride on the coat tails of Microsoft Dynamics C5, but I don't want to get dragged into court three years from now when concrete5 is more popular than Drupal and have my hat handed to me by 50 lawyers. Doesn't matter if we'd win or not, we'd lose every dime we ever earned and it would hurt. That much we can all agree on.
Moreover, this got us thinking. What does "c5″ mean anyways? NOTHING! It just came around out of laziness. "concrete5″ makes sense. We've got a building material for the web. The building material is flexible, strong, you can make anything out of it and add to it easily over time – just like its namesake. The "5″ is the major release version, and is part of the brand because A) you can't trademark the word ‘concrete' B) it's an odd number and looks cool and C) we firmly believe we're building towards an end state. There will not be infinite versions of concrete CMS.. at some point, the core will be "right" and all we'll be doing is dealing with issues new browsers create and putting stuff in the marketplace. We believe this. This makes a meaningful name.
C5 doesn't help us, it hurts us. Yes, it sounds memorable, but you can't say for what. Are you thinking of a jet? a car? our software? Who knows. There's no reason for us to invest our hard earned money and time into creating a brand that is so innocuous that it means something different to every person who hears it.
So we went back to the drawing board. What would work in the same footprint, but get across some of the real brand around concrete5? Our mission is to make running a website easy. The in-context editing experience is very hands-on and tactile. A regular human can use concrete5 without any real training, we want you to reach out and play with your website in a DIY atmosphere.. what says all of that??? Well the human hand of course! (thanks to my wife on this one..) It's got 5 fingers, it kinda makes a C when you hold it out, it feels like you can reach out and grab the stuff on your website and change it which is just what concrete5 lets you do…
So without further ado, I present our new logo!