The video-rental service has quietly debuted new branding onrecent trailers for "Orange is the New Black" and its other original series. It replaces the white, shadowed letters and red backdrop of Netflix's iconic logo with a cleaner look comprised of flat red letters against a white background.
No big deal, right? Companies update their corporate logos all the time.
But here's the strange part: Netflix acts as if the new logo doesn't exist. The company did not respond to e-mails and phone messages from CNN seeking comment on the new look. They'veignored requests from other media outlets, too.
Nor has Netflix mentioned the new logo on its social media pages, its website or even its iconic red DVD envelopes, which continue to show the traditional branding.
What gives? Corporations typically make a big fuss when they tinker with an established logo. Witness Yahoo, which turned the rollout of its new logo in September into a monthlong event.
"Maybe Netflix is afraid that loyal customers will be disgusted by the new design, like what happened with the Gap a few years back, so they'd like to pass the baton from one logo to another slowly and quietly," wrote Mark Wilson for Fast Company. "Or maybe Netflix just isn't all that organized and hasn't made a decision as to what it's doing yet."
Either way, early reviews of the new look were predictably mixed.
"Even blurry it's so much better than the previous one," said a post on Brand New, a blog about corporate identity, under the headline, "Shadowless is the New Black." "It has a cleaner look without the stroke and shadow, and the less generous letter-spacing makes it feel more like a cohesive unit."
But a commenter on Reddit called the new logo a significant downgrade.
"The previous logo is so evocative of cinema, and it still looks pretty sharp," wrote the user, who goes by recklessfred. "I can see why they'd want to move away from a logo that says 'this service is mostly for movies' since they're making a big push for original TV-style content, but this revision loses the cinema aspect without gaining anything to replace it."