Facebook introduced an “expanded privacy checkup tool” Thursday, which is essentially a popup reminding users to check their privacy settings before they post. But nowhere in the company blog did the social network introduce the “Sorry to interrupt” blue prehistoric creature it has enlisted to disseminate it’s privacy advice.
Oh, polite little dinosaur who looks like he could be ripped straight from the pages of a Randi Zuckerberg children’s book, what is your name? Maybe the “Privacy settings are so easy your Grandpa could do it” dinosaur? The Wall Street Journal dubbed him “Privosaurus Rex.” Nick Bilton at the New York Times writes that Facebook tech writers have called him Zuckasaurus, after obvious parties. Facebook told Bilton that the dino beat out speech bubbles and a robot. But will he live on as a successful mascot, or go the way of the Fail Whale or even worse—the infamous Clippy?
Here are some of tech’s strangest mascots: some of whom you could never forget, and others you wish you could.
Perhaps the most polarizing of any tech mascot was Microsoft’s Clippy. While the virtual paperclip was polite like Zuckasaurus (is that what we’re going with?), he was a little too overeager. Just writing the word “Dear” would catapult him into literal acrobats to help you write the perfect letter.
Here’s Clippy looking dejected on his retirement day in 2011. He couldn’t even get it together in front of Bill Gates! Although we also might not be too happy if all we got after 11 years of service was a wrinkled T-shirt..
Twitter’s Fail Whale
There’s nothing quite like trying to conceal technological failures with whimsy. In times of need, the Fail Whale would appear, being carried out of the water by little Twitter birds.
The whale was harpooned at the end of 2013. As VP of engineering Christopher Fry explained to Wired, “In the end, it did represent a time when I don’t think we lived up to what the world needed Twitter to be.” Now when Twitter breaks down, it shows a distressed robot instead.
Bitly’s pufferfish mascot has gone through many different iterations. Neil Wehrle, VP of user experience at Betaworks which helped design the fish, told Mashable that some of the changes involved making him look like “more of a beach ball than a poison fish that can hurt you.” Here’s the mascot getting drunk (see bottom right):
We kind of preferred this look, but whatever.
Sun’s Java Mascot Named Duke
We don’t know much about Duke, save the fact that he looks to be both pointy and blob. He also has facial hair sometimes. When he isn’t coding, you can find Duke riding the L train in Brooklyn.
TiVo’s Smiling TiVo Guy
According to designer Michael Cronan, “I wanted to provide a kind of identity that would become as recognizable as the mouse ears are to Disney.” In other news, TiVo has legs and no arms.
Snoo is ok. Although sometimes he ends up on firearms…
Tech companies really like their monsters. They’re literally everywhere and all look basically the same. NHK’s Domo:
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