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Why did the O's go missing from the Oreo logo?

Oreo #MissingTypes logo
[Image: Oreo]

People can get very twitchy when a company plays with its own logo design, so it's understandable that there was a bit of concern recently when Oreo posted a Facebook image of its logo, but with the O's at the beginning and end missing. What could it possibly mean?

Thankfully a few hours later Oreo clarified this latest version of its iconic logo design on Twitter (read our guide to logo design (opens in new tab) here): it was taking part in an initiative set up by the American Red Cross to encourage people to sign up for World Blood Donor Day.

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As the day went on and people signed up, the Oreo cookie filled up with delicious creamy goodness until, later on, it finally filled up and the missing O's were returned.

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If you're not entirely sure what missing letters of the alphabet have to do with donating blood, it's all to do with blood types. The ABO blood group system covers all the different variants in blood type, and the American Red Cross had a clever idea to use this to drum up support for World Blood Donor Day this year.

#MissingTypes brands

Lots of companies signed up to remove the A's, B's and O's from their logos [Image: American Red Cross]

For its #MissingTypes campaign, it asked a whole load of companies to remove the letters A, B and O from their logos. Plenty signed up, including Adobe, Google and Facebook, some of them fading out the letters and others deleting them altogether in the drive to encourage people to donate blood.

The American Red Cross has also produced a free Missing Types ebook, answering frequently asked questions about donating blood and debunking popular myths. To get a copy, and to find out more about the #MissingTypes campaign and the brands that supported it, head for the American Red Cross Missing Types (opens in new tab) page.

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Jim McCauley is a writer, performer and cat-wrangler who started writing professionally way back in 1995 on PC Format magazine, and has been covering technology-related subjects ever since, whether it's hardware, software or videogames. A chance call in 2005 led to Jim taking charge of Computer Arts' website and developing an interest in the world of graphic design, and eventually led to a move over to the freshly-launched Creative Bloq in 2012. Jim now works as a freelance writer for sites including Creative Bloq, T3 and PetsRadar, specialising in design, technology, wellness and cats, while doing the occasional pantomime and street performance in Bath and designing posters for a local drama group on the side.