Expanded custom fonts with the same name???

dzurn's picture

We have some custom fonts that our company has been using for some time which we use for printing our labeling and manuals (at commercial print vendors, etc).

Now headquarters has commissioned a new version with some added glyphs to be used instead of some of the existing glyphs. No problem there, except that they didn't change the name of the font and expect us to use and distribute the new version, noting "please copy over your old version"!

Well, that's different.

What I see is that we will *never* know for sure if our print vendors are using the updated font or not, for any particular job. If the font had a different name, then we are all familiar with the "Can't find the font" warning. But this updated-but-the-same-name font is deliberately sidestepping this mechanism! I can't really see the logic here, besides some misplaced idea of compatibility with existing documents.

The reasoning for keeping the name was for "compatibility", but I can't figure out any good reason for us to keep the same name for the expanded version. I can foresee getting missing symbols with NO warning if the old version is used, which wouldn't happen with a new name.

And how do we know if WE are using the correct new symbols in our docs? Worst is if we use old and new symbols in different places in the same document. I would much rather make a new version which adds the new glyphs in the place of the old ones, leaving the unaffected symbols in place. Then, we can do a wholesale Search & Replace for the little offender, and be sure of getting every symbol. (I'm also assuming here that the spacings etc would be the same between the new font and old.)

Basically, not renaming the font seems to me to be so awful that I am at a loss why it might have been done this way. What are the "redeeming qualities" of NOT renaming an expanded font?

I've got nothing so far.

Horror stories from the lives of Service Bureaus would be appropriate to help them reconsider this policy. (And so when I DO rename the font when we use it, it will be a little more defensible than "I thought it would be better this way".)

BTW, the font is an OpenType font with about 3 dozen symbols, adding replacement glyphs for about a dozen. The original symbols will still be in the font, but the new ones are alternates that we are supposed to use. Predominant use is in Adobe Creative Suite, especially InDesign, but there's also a Truetype version for our on-demand Windows printing software.

Real-life stories appreciated!


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