Fonts; and the impact of positioning

Peggy Wilkins
Thu, 13 Mar 2003 10:35:15 -0600

>>>>> "Brian" == Brian Sorgatz <> writes:

    Brian> I was disappointed to see the main text of some articles in the
    Brian> March 2003 issue printed in a new font...

    Brian> Peggy replied:
    >> Could you give examples of which articles you are referring to?

    Brian> See the following pages in the March issue: 71 through 74,
    Brian> 93, 127 through 128.

To me, pages 71-74 and 93 look like the same traditional font, but
with wider spacing between the lines and maybe slightly thinner.  For
71-74 (the D.C. sniper feature), what is quite non-traditional is the
headline fonts (as opposed to the article text).  That style --
stylized fonts of varying sizes and colors mishmashed together -- is
prevalent in many magazines today.  I remember the first time I saw
this type of text in Scientific American, and I thought it was highly
inappropriate for their scientific content ("blurbs" aren't really
suited to a scientific presentation since the style outweighs the
content).  It isn't so out of place in Playboy, though I don't find it
particularly pleasing.

Pages 127-128 (Las Vegas casino comps feature) is very definitely a
new font.  To me, it makes the article stand out from what is around
it; though I don't know if most readers give that sort of thing much
thought.  I wonder if that was the intention; or maybe it was just a
simple attempt at trying something new.

If they did mean to make that article stand out as an eye catcher,
then I would suggest that they move such features to appear before,
not after, the centerfold; this would facilitate readers seeing the
feature via flipping through the magazine.  I don't know about anyone
else, but I find it quite difficult to flip through the
post-centerfold section of the magazine since the pages seem to stick
together more than they do in front of the centerfold.  (I know this
comment seems trivial, but I mean it seriously.)

Peggy Wilkins