Flags are the ultimate logos, and they, like the symbols and icons of their design companions within the corporate world, are far from dead: The former, with their cloth banners of soft pastels or bold colors, elicit a variety of sentiments such as pride, anger, fear, racial or religious purity, valor or villainy, inclusion or exclusion, independence or imperialism, or freedom versus slavery; there are no neutral responses, for example, to the sight of the Nazi swastika or the Communist hammer and sickle, the “logos” of two monstrous engines of paranoia and mass murder, and dual cults of personality — each led by a mustachioed tyrant of seemingly mystical powers, able to hypnotize (and terrorize) tens of millions of otherwise civilized human beings into becoming soldiers or supplicants on behalf of the Third Reich or the Soviet Union — whose legacies persist wherever evil exists, and whose ideologies thrive — and will always flourish — whenever the disciples of hatred and defeat find succor among the complacent and indifferent, while the impassioned and indignant (toward minority scapegoats) do everything they can to hoist those flags atop the halls of justice and stake them within the hearts of good men (and women) who choose to do nothing.
Business logos can also be instantly recognizable, symbolizing luxury, craftsmanship, status and good taste.
The point is: Logos are the result of, not the cause of, earned behavior.
The Rolex crown, Apple’s apple, the three-pointed star of Mercedes-Benz, the Dynamic Ribbon and the Spencerian script of Coca-Cola, and the ten branches of the iconic tree engraved upon every gold plaque for every property managed by Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, as well as the Polo player of Ralph Lauren and the crocodile of Lacoste — these logos have centuries of combined history, denoting a lifestyle and aspirational living.
Many logos may be dead, but the best logos are alive and well; as they shall forever be.