(This was a recent question sent to me by QUORA)
You have asked a fascinating and multi-faceted question. There are many logos that I like from an aesthetic standpoint, but when it comes to the brand that it represents, I am forced to rethink my choice.
For example, there may be a chemical company with an engaging and memorable logo. Because this company manufactures a harmful pesticide that recklessly harms wildlife, the company's corporate mark is no longer appealing to me.
I also appreciate business organizations that confidentiality stick with their visual identity and refuse to give into a current visual fad or trend. CBS, IBM, and The Ford Motor Company are examples of logos that have adhered to the integrity of their original design with only small tweaks, over time.
Finally, I appreciate those logos that are not trying 'just to blend in.' As a design professional, who will ever forget the age of the 'swoosh' (circa 2000)?
With these restrictions in mind, here are my top three 'company' logos: New York Yankees (despite being a Red Sox fan), Sinclair Oil Corporation (love the dinosaur) and Coca-Cola.