Pixel Envy

Written by Nick Heer.

Twitter Rolls Out Chirp, Its Proprietary Typeface, Across Its Website and Apps

Sarah Perez, TechCrunch:

Chirp was first introduced in January as Twitter’s first proprietary typeface. In the past, the company had relied on fonts like SF Pro, Roboto and Helvetica Neue for its brand. The goal with Chirp — beyond giving Twitter its own form of visual expression — was to offer a typeface that’s sharp and legible for everyday use, but also one that would allow for more personality, including when put into motion or used for brand advertising.

At the time of its debut, however, Twitter had not yet committed to making Chirp the typeface for its wider product, though the creative director for Twitter’s global brand, Derrit DeRouen, said it was his “personal desire” to do so.

Derrit DeRouen, commenting on Chirp in a January thread:

[…] Grilli Type then brought us a beautiful balance between American Gothics and European Grotesques. Research into early hand cut examples gave us the quirkiness that amplified the display set.

Rounded tittles and punctuation introduce a humanist character. The result is a versatile, contemporary family (82 styles across Standard and Display!) with international sensibilities. It accomplishes exactly what we need and it has made itself the hero of our refresh.

After spending a some time in the official Twitter app today, I think I like Chirp in use. It reminds me of Franklin Gothic — a good version — and, at the weight and size I have set it to, engenders a feeling of precision and clarity that Twitter frankly does not deserve.