Support The Moscow Times!

Russian Design Firm Denies Plagiarism Accusations Over 'New Moscow' Logo

A Russian design firm has denied accusations of plagiarism after a logo it charged the city of Moscow 15 million rubles ($240,000) to develop has been exposed as a near exact match with an image available for free download on a pattern-sharing website.

The Apostol firm, co-owned by Russian television presenter Tina Kandelaki, said the logo it has developed to symbolize “New Moscow” — the capital's outlying districts incorporated into the city a few years ago — was the result of applying complex software to graph the so-called Voronoi diagram, the news portal reported Monday.

The diagram — representing a mathematically precise partitioning of a plane into regions — is also available for download from the website.

“The key visual metaphor in designing the brand of New Moscow was a pattern based on the Voronoi diagram,” a spokesperson for Apostol was quoted as saying. “In nature, this pattern is formed organically, but creating it artificially requires algorithms that mathematically recreate this way of partitioning a space.”

“To generate the Voronoi pattern our designers used special programming equipment. Such practices are common in graphic design,” the spokesperson was quoted as saying.

Following Apostol's denials of plagiarism, State Duma deputy Alexander Ageyev said he was recalling his complaint to the Prosecutor General's Office, adding that the design firm convinced him it had earned its fee through significant work, RBC business news agency reported.

“It turns out, a huge amount of labor has been put into this, I could not even expect that,” Ageyev was quoted as saying.

… we have a small favor to ask.

As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just 2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.


Read more