Harry Potter font looks like Yahoo logo?

First, a non-spoiler review of Harry Potter: I liked it a lot. If you enjoyed the other books, you’ll really like the final Harry Potter.

But you know you’ve been concentrating on search too much when you look at the book spine of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and the first thing you notice is “Wow, that font looks a lot like the font that Yahoo! uses for their logo.”

Don’t believe me? Sarah McFalls made a similar freeware Harry Potter font that she called Lumos.

Then I followed these short instructions to install a TTF font on an Ubuntu machine.

Now compare the two fonts:

Lumos font


Yahoo logo

Pretty close, huh? At least, the Y, A, and H looked similar to me. πŸ™‚

97 Responses to Harry Potter font looks like Yahoo logo? (Leave a comment)

  1. Harith


    Btw, haven’t you noticed that I have kept my promiss?

    Never ask for- or mention again “Speciall Matt Cutts Grabbag Post” πŸ™‚

  2. Yeah, it does look pretty similar. Makes you wonder which search engine JK Rowling uses!

  3. Why that book is so special? It’s even more popular than bible (I think).

    They do look similar, but it’s not the same font πŸ˜‰

  4. Andrew

    Oh maaan…I am sure you have just passed under a very challenging Geek Limbo stick. πŸ™‚

    Looks like you had a quiet weekend?

  5. Hi Matt,

    what a great post. I like the title πŸ˜‰ looks familiar… And I agree with you, very good book, but my advice: If you want to read it, hurry up. There are so much Spoilers around, that the chance to stumble upon one is very high.

    Enjoy it…

  6. Yahoo! collaborates with the young wizard to create a special black magic spell, in order to shut down Google…
    Harry Potter also shares his glasses with Jerry Yang.

  7. interesting comparison.. luv it

    cool spam protection πŸ™‚ what is the sum of 1 + 7 ?

  8. They look pretty close. Does that mean that Harry will be working with the Ministry of Yahoo! when he grows up?

  9. It also stops stupid people commenting, no?

  10. Just another reason to have a HP Google Logo! πŸ™‚

  11. Does that mean that all Google users are muggles?

  12. Deb

    Hi Matt
    It’s wright but Harry is a hmmm you know we all love it.

    “Ilan” said “Does that mean that all Google users are muggles?”
    it’s also interesting to me but I think Matt is a wizard.

  13. Whoa, that’s messed up. Harry Potter is a thief! :/
    Seriously, that’s similar to say the least. Never noticed it, maybe because I never watch that Potter guy.

  14. Hmm. Makes you wonder if this whole Harry Potter thing is actually a Yahoo conspiracy, doesn’t it?

    Oh, wait. Nevermind. Forget I mentioned it.

  15. Makes you wonder which search engine JK Rowling uses!

    Actually, the illustrations (and I’m guessing the lettering) in the book were done by Mary GrandPrΓ¨, although tbh I can’t find anywhere saying whether or not she did the cover as well.

    Matt, did you know that there were 2 editions? Which did you read, Adult or Children’s? Or do you know?

  16. That must be one of those subliminal marketing things. The font looks like Yahoo!, Yahoo! is a search engine, search engines list websites, some websites use cookies, Mr. Christie makes cookies…

    That’s it! It’s a subliminal ad for Mr. Christie! No wonder people are always eating cookies and reading in bed! THOSE EVIL BASTARDS!

  17. Dave

    I find this post hilarious because the latest yahoo serps update is terrible.. Harry Potter killed yahoo search.

  18. Dan

    Matt: Thanks for the early morning laugh. πŸ™‚

  19. Harith


    “No wonder people are always eating cookies and reading in bed!”

    Did you mean: Google-Matt and Yahoo-Jeremy eat high calorie cookies in bed πŸ™‚

  20. Nah, I eat my cookies in the big lay-z-boy recliner! πŸ™‚

  21. If you go to Yahoo and search “rettop yrrah” which everyone by now knows is “Harry Potter” spelled backwards, you get on the 7th search result (which coincidentally is also the # of books in the Harry Potter series) that leads to a torrent site that you have to log-in to become a member.

    Oddly enough that torrent has the infamous “fleur de lis” which is a popular symbol in French Canada for Quebec sovereignty. We all know that JK is an English nationalist and there is nothing more she would like than to see the spirit of French Canadians userp Britian’s long time nemesis, France, in an all out civil war of sorts.

    Just pointing out the obvious. She wants us to know. I’m sure everyone came to this conclusion independently. If not, well then, who tied your shoes this morning.

  22. haha I’m reading it now… can’t stop to look at the font on the cover!

  23. AJ

    From the text you’ve shown above, it certainly looks very similar!

    p.s. Someone mentioned the “spam protection” on your blog, and being a former developer I’ve thought about how easy it would to crack it. So easy in fact that someone could simply extract the numeric part (e.g. 1 + 9), plug it into google http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=1+%2B+9&btnG=Search
    and simply plug in the returned value!

    An easy fix for the above crack would be to replace the operator (e.g. +) with the word “and” – google isn’t smart enough (yet) to return the correct value…

  24. Folks! That font could look like, but the original logo


    does have nothing in common with that font! Also: we have been working with some font designers lately, and they would kill you, if you say, Helvetica looks like Arial πŸ™‚

  25. Well it looks the same.

    Perhaps they use a lot Yahoo, and feel identify with yahoo logo. Well i still do not see the movie, but i’ll take a look at the logo and text details

  26. AJ

    p.s. Regarding my last post: My bad – google IS smart to replace “and” with a “+”. http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=1+and+2
    Kudos to Google! I guess “&” would do the trick…

  27. Andrew, I left the computer behind this weekend and it was nice. I managed to clean out the garage, which included putting the fake Christmas tree into a box. Yeah yeah, I know, I should have waited just a few more months and it would have wrapped around to Christmas again. πŸ™‚

    Add in a full day of cleaning and doing laundry, and it was a pretty productive weekend.

  28. Matt,

    Doesn’t your butler handle cleaning the garage, putting the xmas tree away and doing your laundry?

    My wife is sitting next to me in bed listening to the new Harry Potter book.

    I am not a Harry Potter fenatic but I did see the new movie last week and thought it was good. I know..I know..the books are much better.

  29. a close match, that’s for sure. Interesting that Yahoo goes UP, whereas Potter seems to go down (the font, that is).

  30. Matt-

    Bro! Does Google do random drug tests? I think you need one. πŸ™‚

    Kidding of course. It was good to chat at WordCamp. I have more questions for you but no idea how to contact you.


  31. hey matts,

    So, its seems like you also a big fan of Harry Potter.

    and yes, you are right, Y, H and O matches.

    amit verma

  32. Matt, Yes it is looking alike πŸ™‚ πŸ˜€


  33. Dovid

    They don’t look so close, but I can understand why you thought so. By the way I feel sort of left out since I’ve never read any of the Harry Potters.

  34. JR

    I would say that the folks ay Yahoo should have something to say about this. Exactly alike? No. Strangely similar? You betcha. In the artists’ defense, this could be a case of being inspired unknowingly by a logo that is as much pop art as the Coca Cola font. Problem is, if I was in the business of designing logos and fonts or using them for creating major motion picture marketing I would have done my research.

    Definitive Synergy

  35. I think J K Rowling uses Yahoo. Nice one Matt.

  36. Deathly Yahoo,… πŸ™‚ Only a Google Employee can come up with that! lol


  37. Definitely very simiar except for the exclaimation point.

    Good Gosh Matt, with your busy schedule between work and travel for work, where do you find the time to read? Are they going to come outwithamoviefor this Harry Potter book. Even though I’m in my 30’s I really like the Harry Potter films.

    oh, btw Matt, if you have a dog, check the new site in my post (I used it instead of my usual blog,but I think you’ll like it).

    Also, can you slip us some info (an approximate date) on when the next Google update is going to go down ??? The SERPs are kickng serious butt, and july was my best month of Adsense earnings *ever*. I’ve been cranking out good content and it’s really paying off.

    Yeah for Google !!!

  38. I uploaded the font to whatthefont,
    and it found these fonts, none of which really match well:

    RR Bold


    Bodoni Roman

  39. Yeah Matt, its little bit alike:) Great to know that you like Potter, same here!

  40. Lewis

    Ah yes, Harry Potter. I was one of those unfortunate souls who had to take his girlfriend to the supermarket at midnight on the dot to purchase her copy. I couldn’t help but feel slightly embarrassed to be stood in a long queue of fanatics all grinning manically as they held their shiny new book!

    I think we’re not lucky enough, here in England, to have that Yahoo font printed on any of the Harry Potter books. I agree it’s surprisingly similar though, perhaps the closest they could get to sneaky product placement πŸ˜‰

  41. @Dave

    Yeah i was wondering the same – Figured it was July but it never happened. Any ideas Matt or is that all confidential? ;-/

    The other Matt!

  42. Hi Matt

    See what you mean.

    I am only up to chapter 3 good but a bit slow. I hope it has a good ending. I also hop i dont find out before i finish.

  43. So Matt … the supplemental index is no more. Comments? πŸ™‚

  44. Do you actually get the time to actually read novels? πŸ™‚

  45. Harith

    Kate Morris

    “So Matt … the supplemental index is no more. Comments? :)”

    The supplemental index would be still there, but you wouldn’t be able to see the supplemental results label πŸ˜‰

  46. Yeah it does look like a blatant rip off. I’d be surprised if using the same font would classify as copyright infringement though. Fonts can only change so much and a lot of fonts are based on other fonts. So it would be too difficult to prove which fonts are too close. For all we know, maybe Yahoo and Harry Potter ripped off the same font from someone else. I just don’t know how people find the time to notice font similarities.

  47. Yes. I know that. I just was waiting for Matt to comment on the thing I almost know he spearheaded. He might not have, but brought it up many times in Seattle.

    I guess I just wanted to hear him say … “Ha! There is no supplemental index … well nothing named that now.”

  48. Dave (original)

    Oh no, not supplimental phobia again!

    I wish Google would drop all labels, TBPR, backlink checks etc. Oh wait, no I don’t, that may have the shadow chasers and With hunters focusing a content instead.

  49. I hope the ugly greybar goes away for good. I think it confuses a lot of people. I know a lot of new webmasters who I’ve been helping out are having a real hard time getting people to link to them if they have a greybar. I don’t like to see these kids I’m helping get discouraged because they;ve been busting their humps posting original content to their blogs every day and they don’t have the tiniest bit of “google green” in the toolbar.

    Hey Matt, put down the Harry Potter book for a minute and come talk to us!! We luv you and we’re waiting for you to feed us some good insider “G”ossip πŸ™‚ -hint-hint-pr update-hint-hint

  50. Haha. This may be bad, but I could care less about supplemental … or the “Google Toliet” as it’s starting to be called. All the pages on my sites I want indexed are indexed. πŸ™‚ I just wanted to see Matt do a happy dance that he got his way.

  51. Am feeling strangely reassured by the fact you are a Harry Potter fan. However this terrible speculation about whether a dark mark should/will appear over the Potter or Yahoo camps, makes me wonder whether you identify more closely with Snape or Dumbledore in your professional life!?

    The supplemental index debate is nothing compared to this question. So, swallow the verisatum, and tell us – should we now refer to you as Mr. Matt ‘Sectumsempra’ Cutts in our blogs?

  52. You’re doing the laundry yourself? From my experience cats and monsters don’t respect your efforts πŸ™‚

  53. Hi Matt,

    I think it is the same font that Yahoo! uses with some distortion from the real one (which is used on Harry Potter). I’m sure I can create yahoo logo from the same font. just have to do a little resize and move on Adobe Illustrator.

  54. i dislink Harry Potter but these fronts i like

  55. Harry Potter font is hard,yahoo’s is soft

  56. Dave (original)

    Errr, pages in the Supplimental Index are also indexed, that why it’s called the “Supplimental Index”

  57. Yep they definitely do look extremely similar.

  58. Quite a find matt. Dont know if yahoo have any objections on this.

  59. Harith

    No more Potter..no more Yahoo πŸ™‚

    The moment of truth has arrived. Who did it to Answers.com? You? or our good young friend Adam Lasnik? or maybe both of you supported by Brian White?

    Who ever did it.. You say hello from me to the friend at Google Search Quality Team and tell them ….Well Done Job. Wish to see more of the same πŸ™‚

  60. This is my first comment on this site, so hello to all

    If I’m not wrong, you were recently ready HP7.You know from my experience I can say that during the after reading HP books especially the last one, you tend to see things of similar fashion and that’s how you must have come for this awesome match

    By the way, if you use bold with this font, O will also look similar{just a guess}

  61. Hmm… probably only on the US edition? I’ve got the UK/Canada Children’s edition and that’s not the font…

  62. How much time did it actually take to do it? They seem amazingly similar. I like the font and the Harry Potter movies are not bad.

  63. The font almost the same with font that use for Yahoo! everybody talk harry potter but not me..

  64. Has Matt been kidnapped or is that just a REALLY gripping book?

  65. I always say that he is Parry Hootter πŸ™‚

  66. How will we all survive without Harry?

    Plus now I know that Matt does his own laundry! I don’t know how many shocks I can take in the same day. So much for my dreams of becoming all rich and successful and powerful and whatnot, if you STILL have to wash your own socks it takes the shine off it a bit. Maybe that’s just me.

    (I just tried to send this comment and I’d got the spam question wrong. I am so dumb I deserve to wash my own socks.)

  67. Harith


    Rumor has it that Matt, Emmy and Ozzie has left for another vacation πŸ™‚

  68. Yeah its close….but…I don’t think they are the same…and i personally find the Harry font more mysterious to look at. Just look at the ‘T’ & ‘E’ …i think its the perfect font to be used in the header of any thriller movie or book.

    Nice Find…Thanks….I just installed it..looks gr8.

  69. yes they copied the font of yahoo for sure no doubt about it

  70. Definitely an interesting observation but I don’t think I would go so far as to say that Yahoo’s font was the inspiration behind JK Rowling’s chosen font for Harry Potter – either way though, I will admit it’s a great font!

  71. problly they use the same font, mistake by the creator

  72. After playing around in Photoshop (resizing and moving the letters, but no changes to the vectors themselves), I’ve gotta say, they’re really similar:

    Comparison Image

    Considering that Lumos is a fan-made font, and not the actual font used on the books, they very well could the same font. The serifs on the book are swooped just like the Yahoo logo, as opposed to Lumos’s straight strokes.

  73. Zacharia

    “Eat, Sleep, and Breath” was something my boss had told me when I joined her SEO department.

    To be able to catch THAT though, you must do a lot more than just those three things.

    Something you may or may not have known about is the Spiderman 3 Movie font, and the Playstation 3 font. I would say in that case, the common font is less of an anomaly as Sony Pictures produced the movie.

  74. I liked the book very much, too. A few chapters in the middle when they went about camping were sleepy, but I guess it might have been to the fact that I was up until late reading them.

    What about iPhone? I was hoping you would write some more about it? No more Apple love?

  75. Matt;

    I would love to see you blow everyone’s mind and write your own version of Harry Potter… I can see it all now…

    “Matt Cutts and the Shrieking Supplementals”
    “Matt Cutts and the Alabaster Algorithm”
    “Matt Cutts and the Order of the Rankings”

    I’m seeing merchandising in your future!!

  76. ed

    i dont read harry potter and dont tend to use yahoo… this post is wasted on me!!

  77. actually i like the idea of “reverse spelling” of “harry potter” which sells its books but who’s gonna search this term in search engine. May be those book sellers are thinking too much to get search engine top rank?

  78. thank you
    I liked the book very much, too. A few chapters in the middle when they went about camping were sleepy

  79. Just getting in to the first one now, need to escape in to la la land and fly way with a broom stick

  80. How many Quidditch players does it take to light up a wand?
    Six to work their butts off and a Seeker to take the credit.

  81. Nice Find…I just installed this font..

  82. nisreen

    they look really similar to me.
    i wish there was one that looked like the google! πŸ˜‰

  83. That’s a great font. And I’m glad she has a mac version.


  84. Yeah, the fonts look similar, but OO’s aren’t the same xD
    And about this Lumos font being a copy of Yahoo’s font, I think it’s possible because first Harry Potter book was published in 1997, and yahoo was founded around ’95… As you can see on this picture :
    The font used to write J.K.Rowling is Lumos πŸ™‚

  85. It does look pretty close, and i liked that last book very much as well. I thought it was a great ending to the series.

  86. To Jeremy above, you cannot compare Harry to Yahoo, Harry is cool.

  87. Harry Potter is awesome read all the books. Imagination is a great why to escape

  88. haha, it really has equal font. πŸ™‚ It seems when you find something interesting you will get answers for the “cost of your life”. πŸ™‚ It shows stubborn character, but stubborn in good way of speaking.

  89. I agree. They look very similar,but i don’t like both of them. uninstall.

  90. Yeah I’ve heard those books are great, but haven’t had the opportunity to read any of them.

    The fonts do look similar – maybe Yahoo is just bold with a little alterations on the o’s?

    thanks for the font

  91. sam

    so who cares what the fonts look like?

  92. Hey. I know this is slightly off-topic but in case anyone visit this page looking for a great companion font to “Lumos,” please check out my “Hocus Pocus” font. The lettering is based on the “Harry Potter” lettering from the motion pictures. It’s a great looking, accurate rendition of the movie title lettering that you often see Lumos combined with. I hope you’ll check it out.

  93. We are still lalughing about it…and it is 2009 now. (actually we just discovered the site!) What the world needs now is a good laugh, things are just getting too heavy.


  94. Kelly

    Ilan: “Does that mean that all Google users are muggles?”

    Hermione mentions that electronics go haywire around Hogwarts because of the magical interference there. She doesn’t say whether they work elsewhere in the magical world, but you may be right… πŸ˜‰