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The history of the Bitcoin logo: 11 years as a monetary symbol

Everything in the Bitcoin logo transmits its relevance, disruptive qualities and its particular way of being noticed. With a white B on an orange background, the Bitcoin logo seems to have arisen naturally, as the most obvious answer, but the truth is that it went through its own path to get here.

Initially, the logo that Satoshi proposed consisted of the initials of Bitcoin (BC) , inscribed on a gold coin, showing two qualities: its portability and transferability, and its powers as store of value or medium of exchange, although this was not directly stated by the creator of Bitcoin.

bitcoin talk satoshi nakamoto
The first logo shown by Satoshi featured the initials BC. Source: BitcoinTalk.org

In its process, one of the most important modifications that the Bitcoin logo passed was the inclusion of two vertical lines through the B , as It is common in some fiat currencies in the world.

The idea arose from a discussion in the BitcoinTalk forum, on February 5, 2010 (11 years ago), where a user insisted on adopting the currency symbol of Thai baht (฿), a B crossed vertically by a single line . Also, as a curious fact, during that discussion it was proposed for the first time to use the ticker or “BTC” indicator to refer to Bitcoin as currency .

On February 24, 2010, Satoshi published a logo with two vertical lines, that although they were legible, did not cross the B in the center. Giving up this central space favors reading and facilitates the reproduction of the logo and the symbol in physical and digital formats alike. The symbol is represented by the character ₿ ( Unicode U + 20BF ​​ )

Satoshi Nakamoto criptomoneda btc
Two vertical lines were added to the B of Bitcoin to generate the character ₿. Source: Satoshi / bitcoin.org

A logo and symbol tailored to Bitcoin

The proposal of this user about using the B (del) of the Thai baht (THB), which has a single line, no was accepted by the community, because it could possibly lead to confusion with the official national currency of Thailand.

A few others pointed out that these similarities between currencies already existed and did not represent inconveniences, but using an original logo would be the decision of Satoshi Nakamoto and the early participants of Bitcoin.

On November 1, 2010, a user named Bitboy, made a full graphic proposal to reform the visual identity of the nascent Bitcoin .

As shown Internet Archive , the post made in BitcoinTalk was a success among the community, who unanimously adopted the white Bitcoin B with a slight slant, on an orange background .

diseño difundido redes btc
The most widespread and used Bitcoin logo turns 11 this February 24. Source: WikimediaImages / pixabay.com

But also, the announcement “Bitcoin accepted here” (We accept Bitcoin), with various backgrounds and transparencies to display it at your convenience, in addition to a series of buttons and graphic accessories.

criptomoneda uso bitcoin acepta
Bitcoin payment buttons to display pages on the Internet. Source: Bitboy.

“I understand that the first logo proposed by Satoshi was a pixel art, the style of the video game coins Super Mario Bros , but it seems to me that it was difficult for him to approach the concept of currency, as such; and therefore two lines are added to the Bitcoin logo to denote that it is a currency ( currency ) ”, tells CriptoNoticias Nacho Rodríguez , graphic designer and illustrator specialized in pixel art.

Pixel Nacho, as the Venezuelan living in Uruguay is also known, affirms that The current Bitcoin logo is probably evolving at the moment, although it does its job in the sense of conveying monetary ideas.

” Bitcoin is trying to get away from the mainstream economic system, but I think it has to be done with some resemblance to what people know as money. It seems to me that it is a logo that is in a period of evolution, which is not definitive, but it refers you to the way of expressing a monetary or economic connotation, such as the dollar symbols ($), the euro (), pounds (£), etc. Graphically it seems to me that it is the most correct thing to accustom people to the fact that Bitcoin is a currency. ”

Nacho Rodríguez (Pixel Nacho), graphic designer and pixel artist.

PixelNacho assured that he translated the graphic language of pixel art is not an easy task, due to the number of color variants that this artistic technique has. However, think that the current logo and symbol was successfully translated into the proper format for branding (branding) and marketing, with orange background color (hex. # F6911D).

“(The current logo) is a good synthesis. It’s very specific and I think it’s quite recognizable. When you see the B with the two lines (₿) you already know that it is Bitcoin. The changes it should have are few and each time we will get used to it being a common symbol “, said the illustrator.

For his part, for the graphic designer and bitcoiner Rodolfo Buenaño , would have room for the creation of a more advanced graphic representation of Bitcoin , which not only reflects the monetary connotation, but also the disruptive spirit and technology of cryptocurrency. The designer also thinks that monetary graphical qualities help bring Bitcoin closer to people.

A major Bitcoin pioneer thought similarly about crossing lines along Bitcoin’s B. Hal Finney, the first person to receive a Bitcoin transaction, among other honors attributed to him, commented in a post that the dollar was initially represented as an S crossed by two vertical lines .

However, Finney noted that according to the Unicode standard, used to regulate typographic uses, in the Bitcoin logo and symbol it was permissible to use a single line on B , depending on the preference of the users and the particular requirements, although the intention would probably be the same.

On the third attempt , found a logo for Bitcoin

In the graphic design industry has become popular with the stereotype of the demanding customer, who constantly requests changes to the delivered design; he’s never satisfied and doesn’t seem to know what he wants.

Likewise, designers suffer from seeing that other projects adopt graphic lines that do not meet professional standards. To maintain the coherence of the design, and prevent the client from demanding beyond what was agreed, the policy of only accepting up to 3 changes is common.

In the case of Bitcoin, the third was the proposal definitive and would come to stay to this day.

Certainly, each service or product around Bitcoin could adapt the logo or symbol to its graphic line, but the pattern remains the same and has rarely been discussed.

As reported by CriptoNoticias, one of the successful adaptations of the logo, symbol and ticker of Bitcoin has been that of Twitter, who in 2019 added the emoji when using the tag (#) # Bitcoin on this network , something that was very well received by the ecosystem, but which also surprised non-bitcoin users.

Recently, the emoji It was used by Elon Musk on his Twitter bio, generating a stir and likely causing the price of Bitcoin (BTC) to spike. Musk, one of the 10 richest people in the world, creator of Paypal and Tesla, withdrew it days later, we reported.

On the part of Facebook, it is known that not only images about Bitcoin can be potentially censored, but also the hashtag #bitcoin, which was blocked from the social network last year.

Interestingly, in Spain the commercial use of the Bitcoin logo could lead to legal inconveniences , since the Bitcoin brand was legally registered in the country in the name of an individual, although the logo was originally published under a free license.

Alternative proposals for the Bitcoin logo break the background

There is currently another proposal that seeks to go from a monetary logo to a universal symbol of Bitcoin. The idea is the same, avoid confusion with the baht from Thailand, but also have greater authenticity (even more than with 2 lines), they claim in the BitcoinSymbol movement. The proposal of this group is to use the symbol Ƀ (Unicode U + 0243), to represent Bitcoin.

“Bitcoin is a decentralized currency , it is not a brand, a product or a company. What we need to represent Bitcoin is a symbol, not a logo ”, they argue.

However, the continuity and validity of the current logo are a clear example that the consensus in the social layer it can be fulfilled spontaneously and without friction , based on a common and shared reading of the value of a sign.

One of the most questioned factors currently in the bitcoiner experience, is the little development and research on the experience and user interfaces (UX / UI) of the logo, inevitably linked to visual perceptions and the level of semantic reasoning that each user has.

We find this idea summarized in the opinion of Nic Neuman, CEO of Casa, a company that produces software to manage the self-custody of Bitcoin, who in an interview given a few months ago identified the main challenge to face in the UX / UI.

The question looking to solve a sign or symbol could be All I can def inir or represent looks like me? In this way, it has been considered important to give continuity and congruence to the use of the current Bitcoin logo and symbol, as a representation of what lies behind that name and image: the most resistant technology for the transmission of value in history.

Not only does it occur at the graphic level, but the current logo respects the concepts and notions it represents, knowing that – although it could be better- Bitcoin and its imaginary reached the year 2021 after 12 years of being created, surpassing the tests of time.

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Sandra Loyd
Sandra is the Reporter working for World Weekly News. She loves to learn about the latest news from all around the world and share it with our readers.

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