Declared your hate for Comic Sans? You’re a douchebag

Posted on December 14, 2009 by

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pictured above: graphic design douchebags

“I hate comic sans”

“I can’t believe people actually use Comic Sans”

“Comic Sans stole my girlfriend and slapped my momma”

That is the general consensus about Comic Sans from a majority of people who considers themselves in any way a graphic designer. Anytime Comic Sans is mentioned  in a conversation, the sight of it, or just thinking about Comic Sans causes a bunch of people to start stating out loud how shitty the font  is. Any discussion of typography will eventually lead into a tangent of how the person hates Comic Sans. There are even dedicated websites that points out how much such individuals hate the font.

I don’t know if it’s just me (I’m pretty sure it’s just me), but I’m tired of hearing everyone saying the same shit about Comic Sans. Yes, please tell me more about something that everyone already knows. Might as well tell me that you enjoy breathing or how not nice Hilter was.

If you don’t know about Comic Sans, let give you some brief background information. Or better yet, walk into an art exhibition or art/design class and mention the word type. The conversation will bound to end up with Comic Sans, but not before a ten minute fellatio session about Helvetica, but I digress.

Short story shorter: Comic Sans came packaged with Microsoft Windows operating system back in the 90s.  With Comic Sans, a bundles of fonts were also included, most notably, another hated font, Arial. Combined, they allowed the general public to express their messages with different typeface personalities. Everyone was happy, except graphic designers, because like all the other douchebags of any  profession, designers also get hard-on’s when given the opportunity to hate on obscure subject matters that the general population don’t give a fuck about.

I understand people pointing out things that are ugly and do not work, in this case, Comic Sans. But come on, if most design or typography-related website or person can only name the same three fonts to hate on (Comic Sans, Arial, Papyrus), then there are a lot more tool bags representing the graphic design community than I would like there to be.

A hated font in a hyped up movie trailer? Wheres your god now?

Look, to differential yourself from the tidal wave (tsunami?) of designers out there, find another typeface to spew hate on.  Here, I’ll help you out. I’m surprised there’s not more of a outrage for the typeface, Trajan. Case in point, watch this video.

The reason I brought up this topic, besides occasional reminder of Comic Sans from the average douche who wants a bit of street cred, is that I’ve recently attended a short lecture from Matthew Carter on campus. If you did not know, Matthew Carter is a well-known typographer, credited for creating typefaces for the yellow pages, Times magazine, etc. He also happens to be the same guy that created Verdana for Microsoft. In the Q&A section of his presentation, he was asked how he felt about the recent change of typeface in the Ikea catalog magazine, changing from Futura to Verdana.

So, you all probably know that there is a “huge” uproar about the Ikea catalog change. People express their anger about it on forums, blog postings/articles, even an online petition had been made to go back to Futura. And you are probably thinking exactly what I’m thinking; “Ikea has a  catalog magazine?”

I must admit, Futura is a lot nicer and more versatile than Verdana. But that is not really what bugs me about the situation. Its all the people who, probably a majority who do not even subscribe to the Ikea catalog, coming out of the woodwork and practically start the standard hating on Ikea because its-a-microsoft-font-replacing-a-old-school-typeface. I mean comeon, are you graphic design people fuckin kidding me. If you do not get the catalog in the mail, GTFO. But sadly, when there’s an opportunity to circle-jerk people’s own collective egos, you better damn know that people practically sit in anticipation, waiting for it to get started.

Some of these people say that the type change will hurt Ikea in the long run, to which I would ask, isn’t Ikea a fuckin furniture design store. Why the hell would the graphic design choice for the catalog of such an established brand hurt them much (if at all). Shouldn’t people worry about the design of Ikea furnitures a bit more? Do a majority of customers get the majority of their information about Ikea from the magazine? Is there a fierce rivalry in furniture catalog magazines in which the better looking one gains global market share? Is this post running to long?

To close, I’ll summarize the gist of Matthew Carter’s answer to how he feels about the new Ikea catalog: He understands and sympathizes with long time customers/readers of  the Ikea catalog and how they might feel negative with this new change in a magazine that was so familiar. To the online haters, they can such his balls.

UPDATE:

same day this post goes up, I find a clear example of design douchebaggery over at Digg.com. Click on each screenshot to see what I’m talking about.

If you do not use digg, the site let people upload links of interesting articles, videos, or images. People can “digg” links that they like. Accompanying each digg link is a comment section, where readers are can dis/approve the comment. In this case, this digg content is of a supposedly funny breakup letter. Later on in the comment section, your neighborhood “graphic designer” feels the need to point out that Comic Sans suck. GUESS WHAT YOU ASSHOLE, it isn’t Comic Sans! Another “digger” points it out, and links to examples of the real font. I wanted to punch things afterwards.

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