Rant: Don’t use Comic Sans!

Everyone in the business world is guilty of using Comic Sans inappropriately.* Without getting into the technical typographical issues, people use Comic Sans for everything — including health forms. I want everyone to stop using Comic Sans right now.

“But, surely, you’re over-reacting,” you might tell me. Nope, I’m not. I’m a firm advocate of Ban Comic Sans. Luckily for you, though, I am realistic. I’m not going to ask you to remove the Comic Sans font, or Chalkboard (the Mac equivalent) from your computer. I’m not even going to ask you to stop using it entirely. However, I do want you to promise me that you will never use it in your business communications. No emails to editors, no invoices, not even any cutesy little signatures at the end of your email. Emails about your daughter’s next soccer match are okay, though. I’m not even going to ban any other fonts, as much as I may want to.

Think of it this way — Comic Sans was developed to be an approximation of a child’s handwriting. Using a childish font does not speak well to your professionalism. Just about every computer these days comes with some version of Times or Times New Roman. It looks professional, and for a lot of markets, it’s a requirement for submitting any kind of manuscript. Sending emails in Times is the equivalent of dressing professionally for a meeting — unlike Comic Sans’ lounging about in your sweat pants.

Why do I rant about fonts on a blog about writing and business?

At least to me, how my words look is just as important as what they say. I’ve been known to refuse to read books or magazines based entirely on how they are laid out, what font they’re set in, etc. I want easy-to-read material, and I feel that my work has a better chance of getting accepted if it’s easy-to-read too.

*That may be because there is no appropriate use of Comic Sans.

1 Comment

  1. Mary   •  

    Agreed! I personally like the font, but it just seems that the word “comic” should prohibit it from anything remotely serious.

    I will admit that I’ve used it for some more creative endeavors, such as an accent font in PowerPoint slides designed primarily for entertainment/satirical purposes. (I believe that was an appropriate use, as those particular slides also called for an animated Jesus.) I also used it for AIM conversations back in the day, although I like to think that my switch to Times NR was correlated with less adolescent conversations.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *