This past Friday I received an email update from Couchsurfing and wanted to share it with you. As of today, there’s 941,725 members and in the near future the community will hit 1 million members.
I remember joining CS back in 2005 when there was under 150,000 members. I learned about the site after Doug Lansky mentioned it at a talk at Xavier University and before my first backpacking trip to Europe. I’ve been apart of it and witnessed it grow and get mainstream media attention (even featured in a T-mobile commercial). I got to know CS-ers while in Beijing, met The World by Road guys in Thailand through CS, and have met people from all over the world in an intimate way – in my and their homes. I feel fortunate to have lifelong CS friends scattered across the globe and here in Boston.
What is Couchsurfing? It’s a community of hospitality. People all around the world open up their homes to other travelers. It’s a philosophy of openness and eagerness towards cultural exchange. To me, it’s the most wonderful thought in the world to know that I could go virtually anywhere (yes, there are cs-ers in Antartica!) and a stranger is willing to host me and show me around his or her home. Couchsurfing brings new meaning to the quote, “There are no strangers here; Only friends you haven’t yet met.“
After couchsurfing in 5 different cities in Europe, I was hooked. I have a vivid memory of Venice when my host’s mother took me shopping to the fresh market with her. In no way could that be replicated from a hostel or hotel experience. Couchsurfing offers a glimpse into the lives of its members, and the CS community’s generosity and camaraderie is unparalled. Here in Boston the CS community is incredibly strong with weekly meet-ups and activities for Bostonians and travelers alike.
Couchsurfing reinforces a universal want to connect to people in the most generous way: by opening up our homes to one another. I’m hooked for life and excited to share this exciting announcement with you:
Marking a Major Milestone
We’ve come to an exciting moment in this story we’ve collectively written. In March, ourcommunity will reach the mark of one million members. To mark the milestone event of the millionth person to believe in this project, we’re unveiling an equally striking upgrade to the CS website: a new logo and easier to use navigation.
Introducing the New “CS” Logo
Though it won’t be released until the day we hit the million-member mark, here’s a sneak peek at the new CS logo. The result of hundreds of submissions, several rounds of design and evaluation, combined with the efforts of our in-house design team, the logo redesign project has been a long time in the making. We’ve taken our time to gather feedback and incorporate the wishes of CouchSurfers around the world.
First, you’ve probably noticed the prominent letters “CS”. Members from many languages have adopted this acronym to refer to their community. We incorporated this trend into the logo with these bold and memorable letterforms.
CS is a truly global community, with members on every continent, even in Antarctica! The globe symbol reflects the spirit of travel, and the instant accessibility of new friends and memorable experiences that our community provides.
Finally, we found the members identify strongly with that symbol of hospitality: the welcoming couch. It is “couch” surfing after all! We wanted a couch with room for the entire world!
Craving to know more? The launch of the new logo will include the detailed history and philosophy behind this collaborative design process.