I’m not trying to be that guy writing hateposts, but man, this thing’s got my panties all tangled up right now.
So there’s this font. You’ve probably heard of it before. Comic Sans MS, introduced back in 1994 in some of the speech bubbles found in Microsoft’s software. It was just that, a playful font designed for use in speech bubbles of silly little helpers you encountered and loved to hate. But here’s the sad twist, people soon caught wind of it and started using it literally everywhere because “it looks fun” or whatever bullshit reason they gave. It spread like wildfire and has been notorious ever since. And that’s stupid and wrong. let me tell you why.
As mentioned, CS is thanks to its design an inherently playful and childish font. Hell, earlier versions even had an eye in the Euro sign, it doesn’t get any more childish than that. Compare that to other fonts, like the well-known Times New Roman. Looks pretty mature, eh? Exactly.
These looks and feels of typefaces dictate their possible applications. Just like you don’t write an invitation card for your “happy plushtown gigglefest pajama party” in Times, you don’t write a letter saying “I got terminal illness x, I only have two weeks” in Comic Sans. Sure it looks fun, but the message isn’t fun at all and is supposed to be taken seriously.
The only valid cases for using CS are when you have a very young target audience, when doing text in a comic (though there’s plenty way better fonts for that) or when you’re dealing with a dyslexic audience (apparently CS is easier to read, but here too there’s plenty way better fonts for that). Anything else is a big no-no. Why the hell would you choose CS as the font for your biology essay anyway?
If you don’t know what to choose, the default sans serif fonts (those without any doo-dads added to the letters like Times has) will usually do just fine. I’m talking Helvetica, Verdana, Arial, etc. here. They’re appropriate in both formal and informal situations, read easily (because no serifs) and are pretty well-made all around. There is no reason to not make them your go-to typeface in case of doubt.
Maybe I’m just being a fucking autist about this, or maybe I look at things differently because I know stuff about it, but damn people, get your shit together. (Don’t even get me started on Papyrus, either.)