Wall Street Journal Font?

alexmotz's picture

This is probably an easy one for most of you. I'm trying to figure out the typeface for the body text of the wall street journal. I used Linotype's font identifier and came up with New Century School Book, but I'm not entirely convinced. - see attachment.

Thanks
Alexwall street journal

typografski's picture

i think Wall Street Journall using custom fonts from Font Bureau

peterbruhn's picture

"There goes my reputation... down the drain."
Again, Yves ;D

kentlew's picture

The Wall Street Journal uses WSJ Scotch for headlines. But that's not the text face, as far as I know. HTF's Retina is used for stock listings. Franklin Gothic is used for some sans. But none of these is used in the sample originally posted.

I can't tell for sure from the online sample and I don't have the paper close at hand, but it seems to be based on Century. Various members of the Century family have been used for news before. This is not New Century Schoolbook, though. Century has also been the basis for custom news faces. But I'm not sure what this one is.

It could possibly be FB's Bureau Roman, which David Berlow based on Century Oldstyle. But the 'g' doesn't look quite right in the scan above.

Sorry, Yves, I think you need to keep looking before you claim victory on this one.

-- K.

peterbruhn's picture

Remeber Yves-"the important thing is not the destination, but the journey itself" ;-D
I think you did good as always :D

alexmotz's picture

Wow. You guys are amazing. Thanks for the help!

eomine's picture

>the release came out today.

That would explain why I couldn't find a
link to Retina on Hoefler's website.

eomine's picture

I know I

eomine's picture

http://www.typophile.com/forums/messages/30/1083.html

Sorry about this, but I usually try not to be so picky. :-)

kentlew's picture

Okay, I've got an actual sample of a WSJ page in front of me now. Now I see the Scotch elements of the text. It's not so much Century-based -- the 'g' is clearly not a Century g.

This text face bears some family resemblence to the WSJ Scotch headlines that Font Bureau designed, but it has distinctive differences in some letterforms -- aside from the obvious difference in proportions imposed by the demands of narrow-column news-text requirements. For instance, the treatment of the top of the 't', the curl and bulb of the 'r', and the neck transition of the 'g'.

These design differences could be concessions to the needs of text, but they could indicate that the text design was not necessarily part of the WSJ Scotch commission. I've got a message out to Cyrus to try to confirm this.

A front-page PDF of the WSJ downloaded from the Newseum indicates that the text is called "DJ4DowText". But this same PDF indicates that a headline clearly set in FB's WSJ Scotch is in "DJ4ScotchCd", so I don't know what that might indicate.

I'll keep you posted if I learn anything else.

-- K.

kentlew's picture

Cyrus Highsmith says that all he drew for Font Bureau's WSJ Scotch were a headline series and caption fonts. Apparently last year's redesign didn't change the text face.

So, getting back to the original question: as near as I can tell, the body text of the Wall Street Journal is a proprietary typeface, possibly called Dow Text. It's not clear who designed it.

-- Kent.

Bald Condensed's picture

The Wall Street Journal uses the Font Bureau's
Pointer Agate for their stock listings, that I know.
Maybe it's Old Modern or Benton Modern?

Bald Condensed's picture

Note to self: check first, then post. :/ Anyone heard of Retina?
There goes my reputation... down the drain.

Bald Condensed's picture

Note to self: check thoroughly, then post. :-(

Mario R. Garcia used the now called WSJ Scotch
Compressed, redrawn and enhanced by The Font
Bureau, for their redesign of WSJ last year.

STARTING THE PROCESS BY EXAMINING THE PAST

Garcia and Joe Dizney, the paper's design
director, the launched a 'visual archeology' of
the paper. This involved going back into the files
and studying typefaces that had been used with
a view to seeing what could be kept or restored,
what could be added without disturbing the
identity of the paper, and reflecting on what
could be improved.

They excavated an assortment of typefaces,
including Caslon, Scotch Roman and several
different sans serif faces. They found that over
the years as various typefaces were added to the
typographic system, the paper had become jumbled
and inconsistent. To solve that problem, they
streamlined the typographic structure by deciding
on three main faces.

Scotch was the original typeface for headlines,
used from the beginning. It was an important face
and people identified it as The Wall Street Journal.

For that reason, it was retained for headlines,
but redrawn to make it look less Victorian and
more contemporary. It was redrawn and enhanced
by The Font Bureau. It is now called WSJ Scotch
Compressed.

The redesign of the WSJ typeface Scotch.
Multiple line headlines of Scotch Compressed were
kept and two-line headlines were added on the
front page, allowing for more information in the
headlines.

Franklin Gothic was preserved and redrawn to
refresh its look, and used for charts, graphs,
inside boxes and other visual elements like
interior labels, providing good contrast to the
elegant Scotch. The bold weight that Franklin
Gothic provides is the kind of weight that draws
the eye and provides a strong navigational device
for the reader.

Because stock listings were so important to the
paper, research was done to find the most readable
face. Retina was chosen. This is the first time
Retina has been used in a newspaper. It was
redrawn by Tobias Frere Jones of the Hoefler Type
Foundry.

The nameplate was an important recognizable
element that had to stay. But it looked 'funereal',
according to Dizney. So it was cleaned up and
made to look more contemporary by California-based
type designer Jim Parkinson. The change was subtle.

Bald Condensed's picture

Tell me about it, Peter... =D

Bald Condensed's picture

Well, I may have taken a detour, but I did find the
information, didn't I? :P

Bald Condensed's picture

And I didn't cheat and edited my original post, did I?

;)

Bald Condensed's picture

Another ID to my name. HAR HAR HAR! World domination
will soon be mine!

Bald Condensed's picture

Rats!!! Oh, this just isn't my day, I guess...

'&P

I'll shut up now. Let someone else do the looking up.
(sulky face)

Joe Pemberton's picture

By the way, the new-ish Retina faces are now
available for sale from the Hoefler Type Foundry.

Stephen Coles's picture

Say, Joe! That's great news. I thought for sure it wold be exclusive to the WSJ.

Joe Pemberton's picture

Yes, I'm assuming it was exclusive for a year, as it's been
12 months since the WSJ redesign and the release came
out today.

Stephen Coles's picture

The page may not be new, but I think this part is:



quote:

For information about licensing Retina, contact:
Carleen Borsella
The Hoefler Type Foundry, Inc.
212 777 6640 x205




And this from the main page:



quote:

For Newspapers
Retina Agate, designed for the stock listings in The Wall Street Journal, is now available for your newspaper too.


Bald Condensed's picture

It's all in the details, Eduardo. It always is... ;)

Bald Condensed's picture

Good thing I read your last post as I was just about
to send an e-mail to the Font Bureau, Kent. ;)

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