Final Word from Wednesday, May 7, 2014

If you don't like the size of the letters used here, you can enlarge or reduce the font to your heart's content. That's one of the big advantages of the digital age. Likewise, the inability to do this with books, magazines and newspapers is now one of the big drawbacks of print publications, yet publishers have been slow to realize that microscopic fonts are one of the reasons that people are abandoning the print media. It's a vicious circle: Sales dwindle and costs for paper and ink rise, and some publications react to it by decreasing the font size and squeezing more words onto the page, thereby driving away more readers. This week, Právo became the second Czech daily, after Lidové noviny, to increase the font size on its editorial pages. If one more publication does it, it will be an unstoppable movement. It's not important whether the real reason is cost management (bigger words mean fewer articles to write), instead of concern for the visual comfort of the readers. To paraphrase Emperor Joseph II, there are already too many words anyway. [Czech Republic LN e-reader Kindle Amadeus]

Glossary of difficult words

to one's heart's content - to the full extent of one's desires;

drawback - a feature that renders something less acceptable; a disadvantage or problem;

microscopic - extremely small; so small as to be visible only with a microscope;

to dwindle - to diminish gradually in size, amount or strength.


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