Graphics: Rewarding, invitational and moderating
Users input options: What can you say?
Images: What ideals are portrayed?–––
Key words: values, typographic conventions and genres
Types of typography
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What is the typography supposed to communicate and what are the priorities of the typography?
The users feedback?
The articles and texts from the brand/recipient?
Fixed typography everywhere, or is the typography changing and communicating various texts; diverse typography on each site or each comment?
If your feedback can be categorized, e.g. in angry comments and curious comment, could the typography reflect this?
What is the atmosphere of the typeface?
See inspirational cards
• What is the topic for your social interface? (E.g. a magazine and forum about cars)
»» What typographic conventions exists for this topic? (See typography used in traditional car magazines) Do you build on these or distance yourself from them?
REFS Michl Apple Guidelines Insible design
You probably choose typography depending on a combination of these approaches, and the categories listed below do, of course, blend into each other. In social interfaces, however, designers seems to choose typography with a main focus on function and aesthetic, which leaves a great space for exploring concepts and interfaces that focuses on communicative and aesthethic values. Which approach do you choose? I suggest that the approach and priority is guided by the purpose of the website.
A cultural approach will focus on what the typography communicates, for example are certain fonts used a lot in tabloid newspapers, whereas other fonts are used in reflective and indepth newspapers. These fonts create genres that communicates certain values to us. This type of approach (a social semiotic approach) is the foundation for this PhD, and is what the guidelines on the left builds on.
An aesthetic approach focus on aesthetic styles, such as typographic features from invisible design, (which can also be understood as an aesthetic style, see Michl) or the aesthetic styles Apple demonstrates through their guidelines. The debate amongst interaction designers suggests that the functional approach is seen as more important than the aesthetic approach when designing websites. I disagree with this, as I believe functionalistic and aesthetic styles is the same question as the chicken and the egg (read Michl on form follows function). Do these approaches have to conflict in order to meet laws on universal design?
A marketing & branding approach might focus on choosing typography that communicates the brand values of the company or recipient. This is also a communicative approach Examples: Medium?