Students might recognize The Nest party’s campaign logo. That’s because it is the same logo that FGCU student media group Eagle News has been using for nearly three years.
FGCU Student Government’s The Nest party debuted its campaign material Tuesday morning, as campaigning for the 2016 SG elections began in the early hours on Feb. 23.
The logo, accompanied by two stripes on either side, was used on The Nest party’s Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, as well as on campus signage and promotional material.
The logo, which made its debut in Eagle News in the summer of 2013, can be found on the print edition’s weekly 2,500 copies around campus, its website and several other promotional items and signage. Eagle News’ eagle head logo is rarely seen without the paper’s name or the letters “EN,” which stand for Eagle News.
“Imitation is the best form of flattery,” said Eagle News alumna Bobbi Gonzalez, the artist of the original logo. “Literally it’s just control ‘c’ and control ‘v.’ I’m glad they like it. They just need to know it’s been on my resume since 2013.”
The Nest Party represents student body presidential candidate Thieldens Elneus — who is running for his second term — vice president candidate Emmalyn Green and treasurer candidate Ivan Rodriguez, as well as 21 senate candidates.
Eagle News met with SG Supervisor of Elections Ian Knight who confirmed that the parties come up with the campaign logos and art themselves but are not required to have them approved prior to campaigning.
“Each party can be as creative as they please in making their logos,” Knight said, “as long as it is in guidelines with the university’s policies.” Knight admitted that the logos are “identical.”
“Them using, in this case the Eagle News logo, was unaware of by myself and the committee,” Knight said. “Because of the preventive measure, because of the mandatory meetings and because of the election code and everything that we do in advance — we inform them of what is acceptable and what is not. If they don’t follow those guidelines, they are reprimanded.”
Although the SG election code does not note any policies on logos and artwork, Knight said that the use of the logo is something that would have to be looked into and addressed. In an email, Knight said that the election rules committee would have to receive correspondence containing factual information that Eagle News actually owns the image to move forward.
The campus newspaper has chosen not to pursue action against the SG party.
Although Elneus declined to give an official comment, he did confirm that the logo was not copied on purpose.
The opposing party, FGCUnited, also struggled to finalize its logo prior to its campaign beginning on Tuesday.
“Our original logo looked too much like FGCU Athletics’ font,” said Jack Emmer, the FGCUnited presidential candidate who ultimately chose to change the logo to a more original design. “We thought it was too risky and wanted to stay out of trouble.”
The two parties will campaign until March 3 at 5 p.m., two hours before the results will be announced. Voting will be open from March 1 to 3.