Yesterday I wrote about student body tattoos. Today I am going to discuss presentation 'tattoos'. That is:
Do you put your institution's logo in your talks and on your posters at conferences? If you put a logo in your talk, do you put the logo on every slide or just on the title slide? Is institutional logo-ing more common on some continents than on others?
It makes sense to include an institutional logo and funding source logo in a presentation, though my preference is to do this in the corner of a title or conclusion slide and not have an entire separate acknowledgments slide that takes time away from the content of the presentation. And I can see that an institutional logo might be a bit more zippy than typing out your address, although that depends a lot on the logo.
Is a major controlling factor in logo frequency in presentations the attractiveness of the logo? I have recently observed many logoed talks, and I am quite sure that all of them featured a distinguished crest, a cool modern design featuring an abbreviation, or a scenic slice of a photograph of an historic campus. Not a single one featured a giant grinning or snarling creature, real or imaginary.
My unscientific opinion is that European universities tend to have much more dignified symbols than those of US universities, which in many cases also use their logo as a symbol or mascot for their athletic teams and that therefore in some cases feature strange animals, e.g. fierce megafauna, fighting rodents, or imaginary creatures. And those at a university with a controversial logo may prefer to have logoless presentations. (For examples, search the web for "university controversial logo" or mascot).
I'm not sure of the motivation of using a logo as a background on every single slide. Possibilities include:
- Perhaps some people who like their institution's logo also like to have continuity in the Design Elements in their presentations. These people probably also have other background design elements on every slide.
- Perhaps it is the culture of some places (institutions, countries, continents) for an academic person to identify so closely with the institution that their affiliation must be front-and-center at every moment of a visual presentation.
- Perhaps some people just like logos. I wonder if people who have logo-filled presentations also have a propensity to wear logo-clothing.
- Perhaps the logo is on every slide to identify the source of the slide for those taking digital images of slides during talks, even though most people think this is inappropriate (and some conferences forbid it).
1 year ago