Thursday, January 1, 2009

The Choice of a New Generation

Over the summer, I read an article in the paper about the Presidential election. It concluded by comparing Obama to an iPod and McCain to a Walkman. If Americans wanted to stick with something old and reliable, they'd vote for McCain; if they wanted something sleek and new, they'd vote for Obama. At the time, I thought, If that's how the electorate frames their choice, then Obama has it in the bag. And, arguably, that's exactly what happened.

Last night, some friends of mine noted that the new Pepsi logo looks a lot like Obama's logo. 

Even the zero on the Diet Pepsi looks like an "O." 

It turns out that other people have made this comparision. Some suggest that Pepsi began working on this new look up to two years ago; others wonder if Obama's logo is actually patterned after Pepsi's more traditional logo.

In any case, I think the point is that, right now, Obama is cool. He's the iPod, the new design, the future. That's a pretty remarkable thing for a President—and it's well beyond the whole Clinton-plays-the-sax-on-Arsenio thing. Obama has been able to tap into the power of youth marketing and hip graphic design, and even if Pepsi developed their logo long before Obama's came around, I don't think they mind if people subliminally connect the two.

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