View Sidebar
Surely green is the universal colour for “Go”, not blue?

Surely green is the universal colour for “Go”, not blue?

Red clip on a lanyardI was idly browsing through the website for the forthcoming Nine Worlds convention (no idea – I only know four of the guests listed!), when I came across their Communications Preferences System.

This basically means you can opt to wear a different coloured clip on your convention lanyard if you don’t want anyone to start a conversation with you (red), or if you want only people you know to start a conversation with you (yellow). Which would make sense for some people with particular social issues.

However, there’s a different colour for those who want to indicate that they’re happy for other people to initiate a conversation with them. Logically, I’d have thought that colour would be green for go – after all, cars move on green, pedestrians move on green, green is the logical action colour for most human endeavours.

But nope, it’s blue. I wonder why that is?


  • In the comics world, there is a thing called the four colour process. It's the overlay of pigment on paper to create the finished product. The four colours? Black, red, yellow, and blue. As a geek, it makes sense for me to see the 3 colours repped this way, although I agree the stoplight version is simpler for non-geeks. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Can you please tell the corporate world that i am therefore not a geek, please? ๐Ÿ˜‰

      (Wonder what a black peg would indicate… "Hi. I'm Batman. *snarl*" ?)

  • Organiser here. I wasn't directly involved in this, but I believe colour blindness was the original reasoning. Blue is the standard colour when this is used in other spaces so is not weird in its specific context. To forestall the obvious follow-up question, red/green in other contexts often have other visual clues to help with differentiating, including position, shape/silhouette, and brightness.

Leave a reply

%d bloggers like this: