Thursday, March 22, 2007

Line o' the Day

Editorial cartoonist Daryl Cagle's blog has carefully tracked the steady decline and fall of the Los Angeles Times (scroll down until you get to the story captioned Los Angeles Times - Ransom Note; unfortunately, there's no permalink). Cagle observes the disintegration of the Times using a personal aesthetic metric:

I've been watching my local newspaper, The Los Angeles Times, as it slowly crashes and burns. The paper is bleeding subscribers as their circulation plummets, hastened by terrible editorial decisions like firing their Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist, Michael Ramirez. Every part of the paper is degraded, week by week.

Not long ago, the Times went through a "re-design" that included their front page. I thought I would reproduce it here because so many graphic artists read our blog. Every first year design student knows that it is bad form to mix too many fonts. Beginners who get their hands on a computer for the first time are usually fascinated by fonts, and produce documents that look like ransom notes. If your church newsletter looks like a ransom note, you can be sure that it was designed by the pastor's sister-in-law on her new Macintosh. So it is with the Times' front page.

I grabbed the front page of yesterday's Times and counted the fonts - twenty two different fonts - just above the fold on the front page! (there are more different fonts below the fold, but I had to stop somewhere.) Check it out ...

Cagle dissects the horrific mess that is the Times' front page and concludes: My newspaper has turned into a ransom note while its disappearing readers have been kidnapped by the internet!.

Line o' the day?

I won't pay the ransom, go ahead and kill the Times.

It goes without saying: read the whole thing

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