Working in Public Relations, I spend a lot of my day writing – press releases, feature stories, blogs, are all part of my every day.
A lot of thought obviously goes into these pieces, but I must say, I rarely give much thought as to the font that I write them in, which is exactly why I was so surprised to see ‘Comic Sans’ as one of the top trends on Twitter this morning.
Clicking on to the link to see exactly what had happened, I struggled through the barrage of abuse Comic Sans was receiving to work out what was the trigger of this trend. But eventually I found it – the creator of the font had written a feature in The Guardian called ‘How we made the typeface Comic Sans’.
There was no news, as such, just a relatively short article on the background of the font.
It turns out that the font was created after Vincent Connare, a typographer, booted up his computer and saw a cartoon dog talking with a speech bubble – in Times New Roman, something he felt made no sense. And so Comic Sans was born, with the sole purpose of being for cartoons.
Except that, according to Connare, Comic Sans was very quickly being mis-used (it turns out that there is a particular use for different fonts, and its use “is wrong in certain circumstances”), until it was everywhere, and it was at this point that the backlash began.
In the feature, Tom Stevens explains: “The backlash, the level of hatred, was just amazing – and quite frankly funny. I couldn’t believe people could be so worked up over something as simple as a font.”
And I’d have to agree with him. I had no idea that fonts had their own individual purposes and should only be used in certain situations, but mainly I had no idea that people felt so strongly about a font. And judging by the Tweets this morning, I can confirm that Comic Sans is actually the most hated font in the world, so it’s a good thing our agency’s house font is Calibri.