In a move that we’re still only half-convinced isn’t an elaborate troll, the University recently unveiled a completely redesigned “systemwide identifier” for itself. You’ve already heard our initial reactions to the new logo, but here is some further explanation behind (and outrage against) this change.

University of Fisher-Price Toys, really.

University of Fisher-Price Toys, really.

The cyan-and-yellow design is (somehow) modeled after the current book-and-crest seal, a boldly simple, modern nod to Silicon-Valley chic. According to the University, the redesign won’t replace the UC logo entirely, but is part of an initiative under the broader campaign Onward California. The new design, then, appears more intended to be a friendlier visual supplement, versus a complete overhaul of UC identity. According to Vanessa Correa, Creative Director at the University of California, the reworked design “is less of a rebranding exercise, but instead the creation of a coherent, consistent, and relevant brand identity where before there was none.” Some fancy tricks in Adobe Illustrator might indeed read “relevant” and modern, we must admit. But we’re thoroughly disappointed with this blob. It looks like a blue toilet flushing.

First off – ”brand identity”? Trendy marketable appeal is not something that necessarily encapsulates the centuries-old traditions, values, and honor behind the distinguished institutions that make up the University of California. In fact, part of the reason students choose to attend this very university or its siblings is because of its reputation of time-forged prestige. It is a reputation, of course, grounded in a long history of academic greatness, established by generations of students, academics, and many other bright individuals before us. We pay homage to historical roots of our reputation with the current classic, universally-recognizable emblem. For this reason, we think many would dispute the relevance of stylish appeal in the first place. read more »


Now U C Me, Now You Don't (1)

As we’ve progressed into the so-called digital age, we as a University should exhibit the dynamism that makes us such an excellent institution. Yeah we didn’t believe that crap either – but that’s the reason that Dianne Klein, of the UC’s office of the President, gave for the recent “modernization” of the logo of the University of California.

In an unprecedented apparent disregard for the 144 year old seal that has become famous among academic circles – the open book that is truly representative of Cal students during dead week – the University of California has decided to go with a sleeker, cleaner, and more minimalistic design for all publicity purposes. If you were a fan of the older Victorian type scroll and circle, that’ll still be available for viewing pleasure on all official documents and letters. It appears that this stunt is just a marketing campaign that is supposed to make the UC campuses more attractive to the average Californian, as if the almost 400,000 collective applications received during last year’s college rush weren’t enough.

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Whenever you start planning your schedule for the following semester, you usually start off with yourA Tribute To Seminars core classes. Most of you may choose a math, a science, or an English course as your base, and go about building your schedule from there. And when you’ve finished grabbing the last few spots in every section, you’d likely lean back and take a deep breath, exhausted from fighting against our rotten class registration website.

However, a few of you won’t be so quick to log out and go about enjoying the rest of your day. Some of you have a couple extra units — and have an intrinsic sense of daring and adventure – so you go about signing up for seminars. Seminars are those things for underclassmen to have fun and experiment with their varying tastes in academia. These can range from how monsters roamed the ancient world, to discussing your vision for the University of California.

The great thing about seminars is that they can be totally random! The professors who teach seminars don’t have to be part of that seminar’s associated department, and the students don’t have to be affiliated with that major to enroll. Ever since its inception a couple of decades past, it’s been a way to bring both instructors and underclassmen with very diverse fields of study together to explore a unique avenue of knowledge that is probably not covered anywhere else. Best of all, it teaches you something that no other class would be capable of doing – do you think you’d really learn how and why birds sing, regardless of your major?

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3874756199_fb16eb129cThinking of becoming a professor or just want to complain about how much the chancellor’s making while tuition fees are going up? Check out ucpay.globl.org, which allows you to look up the salary of any UC employee.

The data was obtained via public records requests by the San Francisco Chronicle. Sounds pretty legit to us. We had some fun with the salary generator. Here’s some that might interest you:

Robert Birgeneau: $445,716.00

John Yoo: $248,766.01

Judith Butler: $166,385.22

Hubert Dreyfus: $45,000.00

Alex Filippenko: $216,733.30

Richard Muller: $199,333.30

That’s right. Professor Dreyfus, inspiration for the Professor on Family Guy Futurama (thanks Ricardo and Matt), makes less than a third of what the other professors make and our chancellor makes more than the President. Don’t ask us.

ucpay.globl.org [Website]
Image Source: S Migol under Creative Commons.


Many seniors expressed disdain that the 2008 Commencement Convocation speaker was Craig Newmark, the creator of Craigslist, and not someone like Steve Jobs or Nostradamus telling us what to do with life after college. But, hey, at least we had a speaker.

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees is at the height of demanding change for many underpaid UC service workers (this includes health care technicians, custodians, dining workers and more), and if they don’t reach a compromise with the university before this weekend, UCLA and UC Davis may not have the high-profile commencement addresses they were expecting: former President Bill Clinton and California Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez, respectively.

Both individuals refuse to cross picket lines or speak while university workers are without a contract. By the way, Nunez was supposed to speak at Cal two years ago, but didn’t because of AFSCME.

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 The future of the Nuclear-Free-Vegan-Save-the-Trees Zone is grim, pending the results of tomorrow morning’s court hearing. Tomorrow the university seeks court-ordered removal of the tree-sitters.Last week, UC failed to reach a settlement with the city of Berkeley, so now it appears the university will resort to more draconian measures: kicking people off their property.Frankly, the shallow-rooted trees are coming down in The Big One anyway. Whether we build something half a mile from or something directly on the Hayward Fault probably won’t make too much of a difference.But in the grand principle of things, we suppose the protesters have every Free Speech Rah-Rah right to join the ranks of Those Who Hate the University for basically telling the protesters “Hey, you’re shitting all over our lawn.”Though, to be fair, they basically are.Our pick among Zachary RunningWolf’s many words were these, as summarized by the Daily Cal:bq. RunningWolf thinks the university’s goal is to quickly remove the tree-sitters.How accurate, since it’s only been oh, ten months since they set up camp, cut the tops off some trees, refused compromise and got arrested.We wondered when the university would shut this thing down, but then we remembered that it’s the University of California, where everything takes ten years (or months) longer than it has to.Image Source: Ted Kwong, Daily CalUniversity to Seek Court Order to Remove Tree-Sitters [Daily Cal]


Apparently, student groups on campus “aren’t allowed and weren’t supposed to use the name of the university (University of California, Berkeley) or official derivations of the university’s name (Cal, California, Berkeley) in their student groups names.

This has come up when a student, Yaman Salahi, tried to register for a new club on campus. His club was rejected because it had one of the officially derivations trademarked by the university.

Under current regulations, a registered group’s name cannot include The University of California, Berkeley, UC Berkeley, Cal or any other variation of the university’s name that is trademarked and owned by the UC Regents, said Maria Rubinshteyn, director of UC Berkeley’s Office of Marketing and Business Outreach.

Of course this is all ridiculous. And you ask, why is the university doing this? It’s trying to protect itself.

“If a student group’s name includes the campus’ name, the public will often make the mistaken assumption that the group, its interests, activities and opinions, represents the interests of or is somehow endorsed by the University when this is not the case,” Rubinshteyn said in an e-mail.

Yes, just because a group is called the “Cal Something-or-Rathers” or the “Berkeley Whatevers” any action taken by those groups is officially sponsored by the campus.

Actually, no. We think people are smart enough that they can tell when the university sponsors someone (OK, maybe not, but it’s nice to think that).

We understand that if some entity outside the university is trying to use any of its names or registered trademarks—like the Cal script—then yeah, it should answer to the university. And the university should wave its magic wand and hold the perpetrators responsible.

But shouldn’t student groups be able to tell the public where they come from?

This only makes Cal fit the stereotype that it’s created for itself—a huge bureaucracy that has a lot of red tape, that doesn’t give a shit about its students.

UC Blocks Use of Its Names [Daily Cal]
What’s the Difference? [Daily Cal]
“Berkeley” for sale [ yamansalahi.com ]