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 Post subject: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 2:07 pm 
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For those who haven't been following the latest fashion trends in newspaper design, apparently doglegs are cool again. For now. <p>It's good to keep up with these things.<p>Once upon a time, I laid out a page with a large file photo and an inset locator map. Our visual expert told me that we should never do such a thing, because it always looks stupid. Two years later, she was doing it all the time because other papers had started doing it again.<p>Many of these gurus are the same ones who determined in the early '90s that headshots should be cropped down to nothing but a nose and upper lip.<p>[ April 22, 2004: Message edited by: SeaRaven ]</p>


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 2:14 pm 
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What's a dogleg? The only outside meaning of the word I know has to do with golf courses.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 2:19 pm 
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It's what happens when "modular" is no longer vogue.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 2:21 pm 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by SeaRaven:
It's what happens when "modular" is no longer vogue.<hr></blockquote>
I see. Well, I don't know what that is either. You have to forgive me, though; I've never worked at a newspaper. (Sacrilege!)


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 2:57 pm 
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On the rare occasion I was forced to do section design, I doglegged happily over the frowns of my colleagues. I think it's an aesthetic violation, but one that registers with only a small segment of the population.<p>Is it heretical of me to suggest that readers don't care much about design once they turn past the cover of a section?


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 3:40 pm 
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My guess is the reason why doglegs are gaining cachet is because retro is so hip these days. Bottom line, though, a fad is just a fad.<p>Personally, I avoid them. Then again, I'm not a big fan of trends.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 4:07 pm 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by SusanV:
What's a dogleg? The only outside meaning of the word I know has to do with golf courses.<hr></blockquote>It's what happens when there's a picture wider than the text below - think of a three column picture and one or two associated columns of text underneath plus one or two that have nothing to do with the picture.<p>[LIKE THIS]
XX XX
XX XX <p>Harder to read, in my experience, especially on the subway at 6AM, as the eye tends to drift along the border of the picture.<p>D.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 4:25 pm 
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The "dogleg" was confronted, debated and settled decades ago. Its use is unnecessary and aesthetically unpleasing.
Just lay out the paper and don't make such a major production out of it, please.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 4:43 pm 
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It does sound unnecessarily confusing. Thanks for the explanation!


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 4:58 pm 
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These guys are so far behind the fashion curve that they're hip again without even trying:<p>Image<p>[ April 22, 2004: Message edited by: SeaRaven ]</p>


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu Apr 22, 2004 7:21 pm 
<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by blanp:
Just lay out the paper and don't make such a major production out of it, please.<hr></blockquote><p>If only we had more "designers" like blanp.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2004 1:05 am 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Matthew Grieco:
Is it heretical of me to suggest that readers don't care much about design once they turn past the cover of a section?<hr></blockquote><p>It's cooler to be seen reading a "pretty" newspaper.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2004 3:10 am 
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The Denver Post's redesign mock-up with a dogleg banner hed:<p> Image<p>The people in the photo sure do look awful worried about them "record high" gas prices.<p>The paper's top design guru tells Westword:
"If, in ten years, we have to do another redesign like this one, we've failed." <p>(How many other slots out there suspect that the lower-right story arrived from the rim 45 seconds before deadline with the hed "Rape probe ... "?) <p>
---<p>[ April 23, 2004: Message edited by: SeaRaven ]</p>


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2004 11:22 am 
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I see that vertical rules, once a bugaboo, are also back in vogue. Maybe the consultants will discover the fact that (English language) readers go from left to right, top to bottom, and stop trying to induce them to do otherwise.<p>All this belies the humbug that newspaper design is all about scientifically proven verities of readability, when it's really just fashion.<p>To think of the resources papers have devoted to this foolishness over the years ...


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2004 12:26 am 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by blanp:
The "dogleg" was confronted, debated and settled decades ago. Its use is unnecessary and aesthetically unpleasing.
.
<hr></blockquote><p>Correct. Ditto for vertical rules and refusal to depart from ad grid. Rest of ya, back to art history class.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2004 10:22 pm 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Paul Wiggins:
<p>Correct. Ditto for vertical rules and refusal to depart from ad grid. Rest of ya, back to art history class.<hr></blockquote>
Having said that I've just put to bed a nifty page using a dog leg head and a partial hairline vertical rule.
Used to be indecisive, now I'm not sure.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2004 10:27 pm 
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My brain hurts.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Sun Apr 25, 2004 10:42 pm 
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Doglegs are a departure from layout philosphy but sometimes the mix of elements - in this case a caption story with vertical pic and a non-illustrated lead story - is so compelling one needs to use them. In tabloids you wing it sometimes.<p>[ April 25, 2004: Message edited by: Paul Wiggins ]</p>


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2004 1:13 am 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by SusanV:
What's a dogleg? The only outside meaning of the word I know has to do with golf courses.<hr></blockquote>
Same go. It's an L shape.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2004 3:45 am 
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What's so bad about vertical rules? They separate elements and add white space. Though if you're using them all the time just to make bumping heads not bump, that's probably not a good way to go.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Mon Apr 26, 2004 6:54 am 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by CopyMonkey:
Though if you're using them all the time just to make bumping heads not bump, that's probably not a good way to go.<hr></blockquote><p>The belief that column rules, or a box, transform bumping heads into non-bumping heads is one of the great fallacies of newspaper layout.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2004 4:01 am 
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Must be about the Ottawa Senators:<p>Image


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2004 10:57 am 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by SeaRaven:
[b]Must be about the Ottawa Senators:
[/b]<hr></blockquote><p>Oh, but the heavy horizontal rule changes everything!<p>Can't remember the source, but several years ago someone wrote a scene mocking this sort of thinking: <p>A couple sits at breakfast, the section fronts of that morning's paper taped to the walls. Between bites of breakfast they critique the layouts, speaking in the most pretentious of designer-speak, never mentioning the news.<p>Back in reality (at a bar), not long after I'd been hired as a copy editor, a discussion of my new paper's relentlessly vertical design reached its nadir when a designer asked what I knew about laying out a page. "That's the way I'd have done it 15 years ago, before I knew what I was doing," I said.<p>I was then corrected. The paper's design philosophy was based on the use of rules and doglegs to create "energy" to entice the reader.<p>"I hope our readers are smarter than I am," I said, "because I have trouble getting as far as the jumpline of half of our stories without getting lost."<p>If only Einstein had been a designer.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2004 11:03 am 
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You know, speaking of what designers think readers want, I was at a seminar a few years ago and the speaker (from Poynter) was talking about doing long, long stories that had the point, resolution or whatever at the end so that the reader would have to read the whole story to get to the point. (It was particularly emphasized the jumping the story to another page made readers go to a page they might not ordinarily and that was good for readership too.)<p>News flash -- readers give up before editors and designers think they do. My philosophy -- write and design for the reader, not your ego.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2004 12:10 pm 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Wayne Countryman:
Can't remember the source, but several years ago someone wrote a scene mocking this sort of thinking: <p>A couple sits at breakfast, the section fronts of that morning's paper taped to the walls. Between bites of breakfast they critique the layouts, speaking in the most pretentious of designer-speak, never mentioning the news.<hr></blockquote>Sounds like Harrower's "Newspaper Designer's Handbook." I remember something about a couple saying stuff like "What were they thinking, using that font in a pull quote?"<p>I left that book at work when the bastards canned me. Shoulda stolen it.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2004 8:14 pm 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by SeaRaven:
[b]Must be about the Ottawa Senators:<p>[/b]<hr></blockquote><p>Anyone want to defend this redesign. Anyone at all?


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 06, 2004 8:48 pm 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Oeditpus Rex:
Sounds like Harrower's "Newspaper Designer's Handbook." I remember something about a couple saying stuff like "What were they thinking, using that font in a pull quote?"<p>I left that book at work when the bastards canned me. Shoulda stolen it.<hr></blockquote><p>Those who haven't read this, even old hands, should. Can't agree with it all, but most bits sensible.<p>
Design does matter, though news sells newspapers.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 2:59 am 
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I'm not criticizing the whole redesign. It's just the doglegs that don't work for me.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 5:57 am 
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I am criticising the redesign. It is bad. Would any of you like to defend it?<p>[ May 07, 2004: Message edited by: Paul Wiggins ]</p>


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 10:41 am 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by blanp:
<p>The belief that column rules, or a box, transform bumping heads into non-bumping heads is one of the great fallacies of newspaper layout.<hr></blockquote><p>You think? I see a big difference between<p><tt>
Mideast     Man
Summit      Held in
Scheduled   Robbery
</tt><p>and<p><tt>
Mideast   |  Man
Summit    |  Held in
Scheduled |  Robbery
</tt><p>[ May 07, 2004: Message edited by: Bill Walsh ]</p>


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 10:54 am 
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More details on the redesign are here.<p>My favorite part of these redesigns is skipping ahead to see what they named the "new" features sections. It's always a hoot.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 12:13 pm 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Bill Walsh:
<p>You think? I see a big difference between<p><tt>
Mideast     Man
Summit      Held in
Scheduled   Robbery
</tt><p>and<p><tt>
Mideast   |  Man
Summit    |  Held in
Scheduled |  Robbery
</tt><p>[ May 07, 2004: Message edited by: Bill Walsh ]
<hr></blockquote><p>Either way, they're bumping heds. My point is that there's no reason to lay out a page with bumping heds.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 4:13 pm 
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I tried to stay out of this thread (it's a subject that makes me very testy), but .... Sure, it's not =necessary= to bump heds. It's hardly ever necessary to do anything, if not doing it is a big fat priority. But why, oh why tie the headline writer's hands with an yet another arbitrary and stoopid rule? Shouldn't the first priority be telling the damn story? Not bumping heds should be a second, third, or ninety-ninth priority. <p>BTW, I agree with B.W. that a vertical rule (or box) does so keep the heds from bumping. Do heds bump across the gutter between facing pages as well?


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 4:22 pm 
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Not bumping headlines does nothing to tie a headline writer's hands. It's the responsibility of whoever draws the pages. There's never a reason to bump headlines.
And you know it. I think you're being deliberately provocative.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Fri May 07, 2004 5:48 pm 
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My paper uses an arrow between columns of news text (i.e. a package of briefs will have an arrow between them and, say, a main story. We also make some use of horizontal rules, varying their weight and percent/black using in-house rules.<p>If two unrelated heds are to bump (a tombstone ... is that the "jargon" for this arrangement is?), we try to use a bold hed next to a light hed or variations thereof.<p>Gatekeeper<p>-30-


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Sat May 08, 2004 12:41 am 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>
BTW, I agree with B.W. that a vertical rule (or box) does so keep the heds from bumping. Do heds bump across the gutter between facing pages as well?[/QB]<hr></blockquote><p>But headlines on facing pages are separated by a fold and an inch or more of white space -- they're clearly two separate pages.<p>Bumping heads with a line between them are still bumping heads. The line makes it easier to tell which words go with which headline, but it doesn't make them not next to each other.<p>I wouldn't go so far as to say that there's NEVER a place for bumping heads -- every once in a great while, you're bound to come across a rare instance where it actually is the best option. But I'd say it should be a once-a-year kind of occurence, because it's definitely avoidable the vast majority of the time, especially considering that most journalists have been trained to do so at one point or another.<p>And as for the headline writer, it's really not all that difficult usually to swap out longer words for shorter ones or vice-versa.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Mon May 10, 2004 3:52 pm 
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Of course, the whole point of the taboo against bumping headlines is the possibility of confusion over which words go with which headlines.<p>I thought I was on the extreme side for refusing to grant an exception for heds separated by a decent amount of space and clearly varied type styles, but I guess all this boxes-and-rules-don't-matter sentiment makes me a moderate.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Mon May 10, 2004 5:20 pm 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr> Bumping heads with a line between them are still bumping heads. The line makes it easier to tell which words go with which headline, but it doesn't make them not next to each other. <hr></blockquote><p>If the reason not to bump heds is "just because," then it's just another foolish design hobgoblin. If the reason is to prevent the reader from reading them as one hed, then significantly different type faces or sizes, vertical rules or boxes, or white space (short lines on the left hed) should do the trick.<p>Yes, the pencil-and-stick guy is the primary victim of the no-bump rule, but the hed writer usually ends up with a worse hed count as a result. And a worse hed count usually results in a worse hed.<p>Once again, conveying important information to the reader takes a back seat to looking nice. Makes me glad I'm out of the biz.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Mon May 10, 2004 9:38 pm 
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On most occasions whn I see heads are bumped there is a better solution that leaves news values intact..<p>[ May 10, 2004: Message edited by: Paul Wiggins ]</p>


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 20, 2004 3:08 am 
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Another helpful Page One package:<p>Image<p>(pdf file here)


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 20, 2004 3:16 am 
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I love how Barnett's thumb appears as if it's so large it has to cut into Tharp's mug.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 20, 2004 6:13 am 
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As a newcomer, I love it when you talk typo.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 20, 2004 9:18 pm 
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Man, I am glad I'm in TV! Reading this thread brought back horrible memories of what makes good design. Now, I just worry about hairspray and makeup and gleefully make typos in copy!


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 20, 2004 9:39 pm 
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<blockquote><font size="1" face="TImes, TimesNR, serif">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by dasher:
Man, I am glad I'm in TV! Reading this thread brought back horrible memories of what makes good design. Now, I just worry about hairspray and makeup and gleefully make typos in copy!<hr></blockquote><p>... and we're all terribly jealous. You know I am!


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 20, 2004 10:35 pm 
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The answer is obvious.<p>Newspaper "redesigns" have nothing to do with readability, or whatever you want to call it. They have everything to do with putting money into the pockets of "redesigners" and "consultants" and other garden-variety assholes.<p>Newspaper design is planned obsolescence. After all, if someone made the "perfect" design, they would never get another paycheck. Ergo, the wheel is reinvented every couple years.<p>I've seen it since time began, or so it seems.


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 Post subject: Re: "layout"
PostPosted: Thu May 20, 2004 11:22 pm 
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I love design but I'm with Bumf. It's time we said the emperor had no clothes.
I had a chance to contemplate this matter when cleaning out back copie of - of all things - Oklahoma Today from the office.


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