I once saw a newspaper ad for a domestic violence helpline. It was in Comic Sans.
I think that says everything, don't you?
Good Morning!!! A Facebook pal recently posted to his status: Whenever you see this font, raise your fists and shout "Comic saaaaans!" This is a splendid idea, and I have already promised him on your behalf that we will all join in this game. But it made me wonder: what is it about Comic Sans that inspires such excitement? …
I actually thought Microsoft Comic Chat was pretty good, back when I first got online. Especially for novice users, the whole cartoon-y effect gave it a certain amount of personality. I'd be the first to burn Microsoft in effigy or otherwise, but sometimes --ok, just once or twice-- they do have a good idea. Shame they never really went with it after IE3
Pete 2 - I can assure you many people do care. I think the article sums up the level of hot under the collarness Comic SS creates quite well - if anything, it undersells it a little.
I'm on the "don't use it" side of the fence...especially in schools where I see it used all over the place. The excuse is that is "forms the 'a' properly" thus not confusing small children.
Fair comment, but there are many other fonts which do that, and when it is used in newsletters home which are aimed at adults, my wife departs the room before she has to sit through another of my rants. It's the font equivalent of celebrity culture - famous for nothing other than being famous as it has no real talent worth speaking off.
Of course, ultimately it's just a form of "I know better than you" snobbery, just as the use of unnecessary jargon and TLA's is. And it does give one a good reason for a long rant at people who couldn't careless and that is always worth a giggle in my book (a book printed in Helvetica)
So does punctuation, my dear chap. Grocers' apostrophes get people even more indignant than the inappropriate use of Comic Sans.
I should say, from back in the days of my typographical training, that serif typefaces tend to be more readable than sans serif ones, because the serifs add shape and distinction to the letters, assisting the brain's job in following the flow of them and translating them into words.
Despite this, I have never deliberately used Times New Roman (I know that's a split infinitive. It's an artificial stricture imposed on language by Victorians with too little to do on those long winter nights. Deal with it) at any time I have had any say in the matter. I suspect it's something to do with the way techies' brains are wired -- doctors are similar, I gather -- and we have finally managed to impose our views on everyone else, by virtue of having control of the only allegedly "personal" computers people think they own. Mwah-hah-hah-hah. <cough>
...who really gives a toss except self indulgent toss pots that have way to much time on their hands.
If you are so annoyed by a font, kill yourself, seriously, your a waste of oxygen.
see what I did with the "your" their. just annoy the other pedants!!!!!!!!! Oooo, look! More to annoy them with !!!!!!!!!!!!!
I notice that one of the alternative fonts on that Ban Comic Sans site is called "Grumble", which according to Viz's Profanisaurus is a slang term for porno mags. There again, my graphic designer brother sent me a link to a Google font called "Growler", which as any fool knows is slang for the feminine reproductive bits.
I have, this very hour, received a work e-mail with attached Word doc explaining the absence from work policy. It's three pages of size 12 Comic Sans, complete with bold and underlined headers along with CAPS and in-line bold sections. It's almost painful to read. It is everything that is wrong with how the font is used.
It's completely overused, to the point of harming itself. If it had only ever been used where it was appropriate, then we wouldn't have websites like 'BanComicSans' and the world would be a better place.
I am on a personal crusade in my workplace to have ComicSans removed as the default font. Wish me luck!
By showing text-based examples of a visual effect. My jolly FreeBSD system, while it does run a reasonably modern browser, something called Firefox 3.6.13 that some of you may have heard of, does not have Comic Sans on board. Consequence: the examples of how Comic Sans looks in various contexts of questionable appropriateness come out in a marginally elegant seriffed typeface.
FAIL. Sorry, Verity, but it had to be said.
Good point. About time someone put their finger on the point of that quadruple-edged sword of licensing and typographic loosey-gooseiness that is our modern day first medium of choice.
Indeed, if Steve the Cynic cannot see Comic Sans, well, fie and fail Mozilla. Fie and fail FreeBSD. Fie and fail Internets and its tubes.
Oops. Silly me. The Forte Finger of Fail was pointed at my beloved Ms Stob. I really should read past the first sentence.
Fie and fail on me.
In an essay on Comic Sans and those who know the one thing, its terribleness as a font (usually expressed in furtive, oblivious Arial), that used Comic Sans for example, erudition, and humor, you saw no Comic Sans. I feel your pain.
While I generally liked the idea of ironically (I hope) (I hope???) defending that hideous little font, I actually had to search my archives for the thingy and to install it, just to see the examples.
Capitalising Comic Sans as in "Don't Panic!"? I do not have enough question marks on my computer to express my doubts about this idea.
it might not improve public speaking skills, but it's unlikely to do any harm!
(Keynote would have to be legal, obviously, but you could kill all its themes apart from black and white and replace Gill Sans with Helvetica Neue. And Windows would have to be killed as well since it can't render glyphs in the correct shap).
...as always, thank you!
However, as any designer worth his salt will attest, the reason we don't like Comic Sans is that to our eyes, it does (for a whole catalogue of reasons I won't bore you with) look f**k ugly. If anyone reading this disagrees, that's OK. Carry on using it by all means.
But as an example everyone might warm to, it has a visual effect on some of us similar to the one people get just before they ask the question "you call THAT music"?
There I said it. I set the default font in all the chat apps I use, to a dark purple Comic Sans 11pt. By doing this, I am saying I'm friendly and easy going, please talk to me. Nothing will stop me from using it, and group chat, I stand out, because I'm the one with the friendly font...
But you'll never convince me. Something about the font just makes me think "amateur".
If I wasn't at work I'd hunt for the photo of a "keep this door closed" sign in Comic Sans that someone has placed a "do not use Comic Sans - we are a fortune 500 company, not a toy factory" sign next to (in Arial).
Whilst you think that by using 11pt dark magenta Comic Sans, you appear as a friendly easy going kind of person, to anybody else, it immediately appears that you are a middle-aged housewife who has just got their first computer (probably a second-hand pentium II) and has discovered the 'e' icon on the desktop. Somehow you have made it further than MSN. But not much further. Approximately once a month, your 19 year old son comes home from uni for the weekend and reinstalls Windows for you to remove all the viruses you seem to have accumulated.
The debate over Comic Sans is to me as pointless as moaning about the colours people paint their front doors, arguing over who's the best drummer or who's the best painter who ever lived.
It's all ultimately intellectual masturbation over things outside of your own control. Suck it up and live with it. Surely there's something more to life to worry about?
From a Grauniad interview with Dave Gibbons (artist and letterer of Watchmen).
I apologise in advance for asking Gibbons what he thinks of Comic Sans, a Microsoft typeface partly derived from his Watchmen lettering.
"It's just a shame they couldn't have used just the original font, because it's a real mess. I think it's a particularly ugly letter form," he says. "The other thing that really bugs me that they've used an upper case I with bars on it: it looks completely wrong to the comic eye
. . . English to kids here in Korea, I use it all the time in my worksheets precisely because it appears clear to read, and its slantiness etc. defuses (in my opinion) some of the stress of trying to read, speak and pronounce words from a language very different from your own.
If anyone here knows the dreadful fonts made available as part of Hangul Word Processor (HWP), which I would not inflict upon anyone not deliberately intending to drive themselves insane, some departure from what the Koreans think is a 'good' font should be welcomed.
Besides I run Linux (Mandriva) _and_ I use OOo and this font is free . . . so what's to complain about???
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