Font faux pas?

Posted May 17, 2006 by Evan Tishuk

Earlier this evening Adam "BA" Howell linked me to a nifty little site called Cork'd (also linked on SimpleBits and Kottke). It facilitates the reviewing and sharing of wines or as Kottke puts it, "It's a little like Flickr or for wine."

As anyone who has ever been to the Total Wine super store knows, the selection of wine is often confusing and difficult. This also holds true for beer. In fact, my first thought when landing on was that there's a similar service called Ratebeer doing, essentially, the same thing--for, you guessed it, beer. So I decide to go visit and see if there's anything new and interesting in the beer world. There isn't. However, to my surprise I noticed there is a striking similarity between the Cork'd and Ratebeer logos!

Corkd v. Ratebeer

Maybe "striking" is a bit much, but both sites are definitely using the exact same font.

Logically I hypothesized that Ratebeer and Cork'd are owned by the same person who is simply trying to build a coordinated set of brands. Though not a sure-fire method of determining ownership, I looked up the registrant information and found that Corkd is owned by Dan Cederholm (of SimpleBits fame) while Ratebeer is owned by Joe Tucker (of, uhh, Ratebeer fame). Perhaps Dan and Joe are in cahoots on Cork'd, but I couldn't find any evidence to support that.

I'm not trying to call Dan Cederholm out--it's Triplex is a nice font and coincidences happen--but it's just kinda funny that two seperate sites (that both rate the quality of alcohol) have such similar logos.


Dan Cederholm ~ May 17, 2006

No conspiracy I'm afraid :D

Just a conicindence, as i hadn't run across ratebeer before. The typeface is the serif version of Triplex, a font I've been using for the SimpleBits logo for the last few years.

Great post!

Evan Tishuk ~ May 18, 2006

Thanks! And, wow. Dan. Your blogging kung-fu is very strong. I accidently hit "publish" instead of "save" and you commented before I could even catch my mistake and finish the post! :)

Perhaps Ratebeer and Cork'd can negotiate a merger or at least a value-adding strategic alliance. Maybe it's kismet?

Also, thanks for giving the font name, I was wondering what that was.

nobrainer ~ May 18, 2006

I haven't used WhatTheFont yet, but it sounds like you might want to look into it.

Joe Tucker ~ May 19, 2006

Thanks for the analysis. Here's the explanation: Dan and I are actually astral twins.

Not only have we both been using Emigre's Triplex for many years (RateBeer in Triplex dates back to the early 00s) but I purchased SimpleBits a few months ago for what else -- a wine rating project! More about that later.



Evan Tishuk ~ May 20, 2006

Joe: I never considered the astral twins possibility. Hopefully Cork'd can build a community as large, knowledgeable and helpful as RateBeer's. Maybe there's some overlap there? At the very least you twins should talk about getting some high quality XHTML/CSS lovin' on the RateBeer front end, ya know, for the kids (I hear Dan's pretty good at that stuff ;) ).

Adam Gautsch ~ May 20, 2006

This comment string has offically surpassed the acceptable number of emoticons allowed by law for one post.

Evan Tishuk ~ May 23, 2006

Bear: You're right. I quickly made some emoticons that aren't as cheesy as the defaults. I'll finish the set some other time but I figure the ;) and :) and :D should cover most of the regulars.

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