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Weblog Entry

Georgia Revival

July 13, 2006

The IHT indicates that Georgia is experiencing a comeback on the web:

The Georgia revival then accelerated, as other designers adopted it as an alternative to Verdana. It is featured on several graphic design Web sites, including those of the American Institute of Graphic Arts and the Dutch type foundry Typotheque. At the other end of the spectrum, it is popular on blog design templates, which is why so many bloggers are using it.

Call me cynical, but when the pool of fonts Georgia is dominating totals all of 8 or 9, it strikes me as fairly obvious you could find just as much counter-evidence of Trebuchet or Lucida being the new trendy typefaces. Regardless, it’s interesting to see an article on web typography in the Style section of a major publication like IHT.

david says:
July 13, 11h

Georgia has a big problem. You can’t tell apart zeros and o’s no matter how hard you try. So, it’s not useful in every circumstance.

Chris says:
July 13, 12h

I’m redesigning my blog with Georgia. I think, and this is just one person’s opinion, that what it comes down to is people getting sick of Arial or sans-serif fonts. The web took the world by storm and everyone forgot some basic principles of typography and design when the moved over from print. There’s no reason to make your fonts 9px Arial #CCC. But designers who have only worked on web designs know no different.

July 13, 12h

Thanks for pointing this out. When I last redesigned my blog 30 months ago I went to Georgia because it felt friendlier and more legible than the Verdana I had been using previously.

Keith says:
July 13, 12h

You know, I saw this and didn’t think much of it at all, but you’re right, it is interesting to note that IHT’s covering this stuff.

Bruno says:
July 13, 16h

I believe that the thing about Georgia it’s that it’s the only serif typography that looks really good. And it’s better when it’s big & bold!

July 13, 16h

What I like about serif fonts is that they look better for bigger text on the screen. On my website I leave the standard browser/user-defined font size intact; I use a serif font and it looks nice.

By the way, maybe nobody noticed, but, despite not being part of Microsoft’s core fonts for the web, another good serif font you can use and which is consistent both on Mac and Windows (since XP) is Palatino, “Palatino Linotype” on Windows. And I like that font.

Blake says:
July 13, 18h

I do notice that a lot of web sites use Georgia, but I don’t think that it’s any more popular than Lucida Grande, or even Verdana.

The big problem with serif fonts is that most Windows users will not see them as intended, because Clear Type is not ‘on’ by default…

July 13, 19h

Bruno: I’m with you on that. I don’t think of it so much as an alternative to Verdana, but as an alternative to Times. It’s also the only web-safe font that includes dropped numerals, which make it kind of swanky for dates and other number-y content.

I’ve been using Georgia for titles on my blog for a year and a half or so. (with a slight negative character spacing…)

July 14, 08h

The combination of a big, chunky Georgia for headers and smaller Verdana for the content is a nice trend. As Mike said, it looks a little better if the character-spacing is reined in. does a nice job styling their posts like this.

July 14, 10h

Thanks almost, Darren! Georgia headers and Trebuchet MS was what I used on my site Verdana is a little too rounded for my taste, and I like the squiggly “g” in Trebuchet.

And you *can* tell the Georgia O’s, o’s and zeroes apart - the zero is a couple pixels wider than the lowercase o.

Zach says:
July 17, 09h

Serif fonts do look nice for headers, but when made too small they become distorted and difficult to read, especially with text smoothing turned off.

Danni says:
July 21, 07h

Some other related font articles:

Does not all depend on what default fonts are available, which fonts are commonly known (how many people except graphic designers know anything substantial about fonts), Georgia looks like a printing typeface. I found this article which could shed a light on some changes about what fonts might be a succes in the near future.

Artur says:
July 25, 04h

I’d like to note that Tahoma is far better than Verdana in my opinion. It might not scale that good, but all in all it just looks better in most cases.

Pontus says:
August 08, 08h

In terms of accessibility, using serif fonts is not a good idea as they are much more difficult to read, particularly for people with dyslexia.

Read more here:

britney says:
August 11, 11h

Pontos people with dyslexia have trouble reading any font, interesting article though glad to see this is making some press but am with Artur, Tahoma is way better than Verdana, but like the article from the Herald reads this is just a fad and everyone using it will move on to something else real soon.