Ransom note typography

Just found a great new phrase on girtby.net:

Ransom note typography is rampant amongst the technical documents that I see on most days.

He links to this definition:

ransom note typography

Using too many fonts in a document. The term comes from the text in a ransom note that is pasted together from words cut out of different magazines and newspapers.

The ease with which fonts can be selected in a word processor has led many inexperienced people to use too many fonts in a document or newsletter. Typographers and graphics artists know that only two or three fonts are necessary for the most professional appearance.

It's a great turn of phrase; I'll be sure to use it soon. Make sure your fonts are selected with care if you're asking me to review your document!

Portrait of Matt Ryall

About Matt

I’m a technology nerd, husband and father of four, living in beautiful Sydney, Australia.

My passion is building software products that make the world a better place. For the last 15 years, I’ve led product teams at Atlassian to create collaboration tools.

I'm also a startup advisor and investor, with an interest in advancing the Australian space industry. You can read more about my work on my LinkedIn profile.

To contact me, please send an email or reply on Twitter.