In August 2010, the blue dot of today’s the day Harrisburg came into being.

Before that, there was no logo. There was just the name—today’s the day Harrisburg.

And that’s how it was from the start, which was the day after the 2009 general election when Linda Thompson beat Nevin Mindlin in the mayoral race. (for that first post, read  So it begins…..)

Using a simple blog template and format, over the course of the next several months today’s the day Harrisburg became where I chronicled city living in the City of Harrisburg. I wrote about things happening right outside my front door, urban gardening, and observations of City Hall.

Prior to that first entry, I didn’t have a solid understanding of what a blog was or why anyone would write or read one.

After months of doing it, though, I realized the virtue of this free way to inform my neighbors and fellow residents about what was happening in our city. My audience grew along with the intensity of the political and financial crisis. The Mayor and City Council were at odds, the debt was growing, and the public was seeking information.

I did my best to follow the action and deliver analysis, explanations, and documentations. Before long, I wasn’t just writing article recaps; I was live tweeting.

ttdHBG_dotThe blue dot was designed for a very practical reason—it was easy on the eyes. The shape is basic. The color is appealing to anyone and everyone. The style didn’t alienate.

Plus, on twitter, it stood out.

That’s the real reason today’s the day Harrisburg became a blue dot. It’s because amongst the stream of photos and blocks of color, the bright blue circle was easily distinguishable.

As a result of my prolific tweeting habit, the blue dot became increasingly recognized in the midst of Harrisburg’s unfolding saga.

As public awareness grew, today’s the day Harrisburg grew. The blue dot became the basis for the overall design of today’s the day Harrisburg as it stretched beyond its blog roots and took the expanded form of its current website.

When the site was introduced in April of 2012, it was clear the dot set the tone of it. That’s how it was established—an upgraded online presence and the bright blue dot that signified today’s the day Harrisburg and everything it does to make this city better.

That how it encouragingly was for one summer.

Then last fall USA Today unveiled a new logo. It was a big blue dot.

At first I was shocked when it was pointed out to me. “Did you see this?” a colleague asked. I hadn’t but soon after I did, Gannett (publisher of USA Today) and today’s the day Harrisburg engaged in discussions on the matter.

From the onset, Gannett was respectful of the situation. Both parties agreed that because USA Today was so much larger than today’s the day Harrisburg, its influence was so much greater. Therefore, people could think I copied the blue dot from USA Today, which of course wasn’t the case as was well evidenced by my prolonged use of the logo.

Fortunately, with all the attention the City of Harrisburg had been getting, there were even examples of today’s the day Harrisburg and the blue dot in national publications such as the New York Times, Reuters, and on NPR.

Still, the legal dialogue took months.

As if negotiating with a mega media company wasn’t enough, dots started popping up locally. First PennLive adopted the look to kick off their monumental changes in the new year, and only a month or so after that, a newly revamped The Burg came out, a black dot its new mark.

It hit me that today’s the day Harrisburg’s blue dot was losing its oomph. Something else had to take its place.

Like a graphic designer friend says, it is just a circle.

ttd_logo_vertical

Thus, it’s with much deliberation, consideration, and collaboration, I leave the blue dot behind in the past of today’s the day Harrisburg‘s evolution.

Now, it’s about the checkmark.

This logo isn’t the only change. In the next couple of months, a new website will launch with new elements and look, new options and functions.

Like the dot before it did, the checkmark will guide the plan.

To next phases!

So long blue dot. It has definitely been good.

Tara Leo Auchey

Tara Leo Auchey

Tara Leo Auchey

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