iTunes Store Hates Helvetica

Why couldn’t it have been Comic Sans?

Back in the old internet days, and I mean waaaaay back. I’m talking ancient history here, folks. I mean waaaaaaay, waaaaaaaay back on September 9th 2009 I installed the latest version of iTunes. It seems so long ago now but I can remember waiting with bated breath as news surrounding the latest release of the new iTunes would come with a much needed iPhone App organizer that would allow people the ability to organize their Apps on their computer. This is a great addition, it lets me move my App icons using my computer and a mouse rather than holding down an icon on the phone with my meaty fingers and moving them around. I always seem to mess up the order of the icons and drives me a little crazy. If you are an iPhone user you know what I’m talking about.

Below is a screenshot of the App Organizer in action


If you have an iPhone and haven’t installed the latest version of iTunes you should, the new updates are great but not all of them. More on that in a minute, first lets talk about Fonts

To Serif or not to Serif, that is the question

There are so many fonts out there. Just look around you. I can count over 20 different fonts on all the stuff around my area here at Schipul. Some serif, some sans serif. Some are hand drawn and some are works of art.

As a designer I have found and collected many fonts that I use in my concert posters. I have thousands of fonts now, so many that sometimes I go into ‘font paralysis’ trying to find that perfect font for a poster. I usually end up with some variation on what some people would call the perfect font’ Helvetica.

Helvetica is probably, if not THE, mostly widely used font in the world. Even if you do not know Helvetica by name you know it by site. Ever been to Crate & Barrell, seen a Jeep or Toyota ad? Then you’ve seen Helvetica. Here is a list of 40 companies that use the Helvetica. The font is loved by so many people it has it’s own documentary(which is AWESOME btw)

Comic Sans, why can’t they quit you?

photoI first started at Schipul on the graphics team as a layout designer. I had been designing for a few years before joining this great company. Since I started designing I’ll admit I have developed some design snobbery that comes out at times but one thing I can say that has been burning inside of me before I even wanted to be a designer’ my hatred for the font Comic Sans

At left is a photo of my coffee mug that my lovely wife bought me. You can get one here if you want’ Ban Comic Sans. That is Rupert Todderson in the mug, not Todd

I’m not going to get into why this font is so ugly, it should be abundantly clear. If you should get the desire to use it please reference this chart first

iTunes Store Bug Commits Biggest Design Foul

So, back to iTunes and how this all fits in. Well, after installing the newest version the language in the iTunes store instantly changed to some strange new language as seen below. I checked my language preferences and USA was chosen. The rest of iTunes worked perfectly, it was only the store section that was messed up.


I contacted Apple by email many times and never received a follow up. I searched for forums but nothing was showing up either. Defeated I let it go, if I can’t buy anything from iTunes and Apple won’t help than why lose sleep. I eventually called Apple and was told that I might be charged for support to help them help me to easily buy stuff from them. I might be charged to find out why I can’t buy something from them, just thought I would repeat that. Well, their free support didn’t help and I wasn’t about to pay. I searched again for forum posts to see if I wasn’t the only one with this problem. Turns out I wasn’t anymore.

Ban Helvetica? Say it ain’t so!

Yes, it turns out that by having Helvetica in my fonts folder is the cause of iTunes error. In order for me to be able to buy anything from Apple using iTunes I would have to erase the Holy Font. It couldn’t have been Comic Sans or some random font? No, it seems I had to commit the hardest font murder of all time, I would have to erase Helvetica from my system, which by the way is NOT free, although you can find it everywhere.

So long Comic Sans

As an act of both defiance and devotion I have uninstalled Comic Sans as well, although that one felt good