Airbnb, the room-sharing website that threatens to reduce hoteliers to penury as savvy travelers now pay one-tenth of the price of a city centre hotel to stay in a fully equipped apartment while the occupant goes to sleep on the sofa at the house of their mom/boyfriend/girlfriend and make the easiest $500 of their life, unveiled their new logo with much fanfare yesterday.
Airbnb’ers received an email this morning, sent “with love” from the company’s Dublin HQ, urging them to check out their new symbol, called (pretension alert: high) the Bélo, which the team modestly describe as the new “universal symbol of belonging.”
There follows some top-quality marketing speak describing the Bélo: “It’s an iconic mark … that, like us, can belong wherever it happens to be. It’s a symbol for people who want to try a new tea they’ve never heard of from a village they couldn’t find on the map. It’s a symbol for going where the locals go—the cafe that doesn’t bother with a menu, the dance club hidden down a long alleyway, the art galleries that don’t show up in the guidebooks.”
If you want to read more of this guff, continue to airbnb’s website, where there’s even a warm and fuzzy youtube video in the same vein.
Unfortunately, the Internet is full of cynics with time on their hands, and it hasn’t taken long for reaction to airbnb’s new logo to coalesce on one salient point—and it is this; the Bélo looks like a vagina.
Or a butt.
...nice to know i'm not the only one that thought of butt cheeks when i first saw the new AirBnB logo.— Christine Lu (@christinelu) July 17, 2014
Or several penises.
new airbnb logo. what do you see? r they testicles, a penis, a vagina, all of them? freud will be proud of it. pic.twitter.com/iwpER4Ovsk— WhatAWasteofAdMoney (@wawam) July 17, 2014
On the upside, it might not be so bad for airbnb’s burgeoning alternative usage, where hookers are reportedly hiring out airbnb apartments in which to entertain their clients.
@khoi This is really not going to help with the brothel thing.— Daniel Lewis (@danrlewis) July 16, 2014
don't be too hard on yourself, airbnb; at least you didn't make a hitler kettle pic.twitter.com/XNCdJTxGmP— swamp witch (@DanaDanger) July 17, 2014