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Monday, December 23, 2013

Hershey's has wonderful chocolate -- but bad typography


Hershey's has been running a very pleasant, very effective and very simple animated Christmas commercial featuring its iconic Hershey's Kisses. 

Sadly and inexplicably the company -- with sales of about $6 billion, a city named after it and an advertising budget of about $580 million -- used amateur typography in the commercial.

Instead of a proper curly or slanted apostrophe, the company name at the end of the commercial has an inappropriate straight apostrophe. That's what comes from an old-fashioned typewriter or the primitive software used in a blog like this one, not what can come from word processing or graphics software that produces proper typographers' marks. The text line includes two copyright symbols, so the software certainly could have produced a curly apostrophe. Did the designer fuck up, or was she or he being deliberately incorrect?

Am I the only one who notices and cares about this stuff?


With primitive equipment or software the same straight symbol is used for an apostrophe, a foot, a minute or a quotation.


In packaging, logos, advertising and on books, it's important to use a proper curly apostrophe.


Hershey's has been in business since 1876. Early packaging used traditional curly apostrophes. The typographer did a nice job kerning the apostrophe and "Y."


The Hershey products now use modern, non-curly, slanted apostrophes. That's OK, too.

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