Over the past few days, Elon Musk’s Twitter rebranded as X, killing off the iconic blue bird logo in the process. The new logo for the brand isn’t particularly unique, which has led to some incorrect assumptions about its origin.
PetaPixel was contacted multiple times about the logo and also saw several Tweets (Xs?) about the logo and how it bears a resemblance to logos in the camera industry, namely Nikon and Fujifilm, with some going so far as to accuse Musk of stealing the logo from these brands.
I think the logo designer at Twitter might just be a photography enthusiast… pic.twitter.com/tEXkWe9rH5
— Albert Siegel (@AlbertSiegel) July 25, 2023
All these logos don't look so original ;-) pic.twitter.com/EatVXEDUzT
— DDay.it (@Digital_Day) July 25, 2023
Great move @elonmusk You just steal. These logos are so similiar in key points, that wthis sould be considered as plagiarism. @FujifilmX_US trademark. #TwitterX = #fujifilm_xseries Check it @petapixel pic.twitter.com/to2kRZWeZW
— Jakub Strumillo (@JakubStrumillo) July 25, 2023
While the logo does look similar, especially to Nikon’s Z-series logo, neither of these companies was the inspiration behind X. The logo actually came from the now discontinued X Pod, a podcast that focused heavily on Tesla and that stopped publishing podcasts in the middle of 2022.
— ALEX (@ajtourville) July 23, 2023
That logo was based on a font found online, so it’s not even particularly original. On that note, Ars Technica reports that it looks very similar to a Monotype Special Alphabets font as well, and spoke to the font designers.
“Regarding your question on the Twitter X logo, we can confirm that whilst it is similar, this is not the capital X glyph from Monotype’s ‘Special Alphabets 4,'” Phil Garnham, executive creative director at Monotype, tells Ars.
Correction to my previous reply: @ajtourville designed the thicker X logo below for our (now discontinued) @OfficialXPod. The thicker logo was inspired by a font he found online (bottom right). I created the video above using the font logo, adding a glow and little lines in the… pic.twitter.com/GF0l2KM2Vt
— Sawyer Merritt (@SawyerMerritt) July 23, 2023
It’s easy to see how this logo got confused for so many others: it’s incredibly generic. So generic, in fact, that it almost appears identical to the Unicode character “Mathematical Double-Struck Capital X,” or U+1D54F, or simply “𝕏,” as The Verge notes. That is how the logo has been able to be tweeted as just text.
Musk has already said the logo is temporary and has hinted that it might change over time. But all this said, rest assured photographers, Musk didn’t “steal” the new X logo from Nikon or Fujifilm.