If I were to ask a question on using separate fonts to represent distorted or alien speech, <or enclose some kind of bracket to represent talking in another language>, how well would that question be received?

  • 2
    FYI: the <-bracket doesn't work in posts, you need to use &lt;.
    – Glorfindel
    Commented Apr 12, 2017 at 10:40
  • There's also the ⟨mathematical brackets⟩ – U+27E8, 9.
    – MetaEd
    Commented Apr 12, 2017 at 15:18
  • 3
    There is a precedent- In Terry Pratchett's Discworld series, Death speaks in his own font. However, I agree that the place to ask this is Writers.SE.
    – cobaltduck
    Commented Apr 13, 2017 at 18:57
  • Piggybacking on cobaltduck's comment, you could also try the Worldbuilding Stack Exchange, which is sort of a combination Sci-Fi/Fantasy Stack Exchange and Writers Stack Exchange :). Commented Apr 25, 2017 at 10:35
  • @TeacherKSHuang They really don't take kindly to questions either not having a definitive answer or not being directly about strategies to accomplish something using consistent systems.
    – Piomicron
    Commented Apr 26, 2017 at 19:24
  • I see. Perhaps if you changed the phrasing of your question, then? Or perhaps there's some sort of graphic design SE as this sounds a bit like it could benefit from a visual artist's perspective? Commented Apr 27, 2017 at 7:34

2 Answers 2


I don't think it's on-topic here, as it doesn't specifically deal with the English language.

I don't know the context of your question (it might be good to add it!) but if you're writing a book, you might want to visit our sister sites Writers and Worldbuilding.

  • 3
    I don't think the worldbuilding section would be right for this question. But the Writing one might be spot on.
    – Piomicron
    Commented Apr 12, 2017 at 12:55
  • Wholly agree with this answer. Not sure why some disagree that Worldbuilding would not apply. Sounds like the OP is doing some worldbuilding. Commented Apr 25, 2017 at 10:37
  • I think that generally in English texts (academic or journalistic, for example) foreign words or phrases are italicized. This is about how English language usage deals with foreign words. That said, I don't know about "long quotes" but there are precedents for this (to also be in italics).
    – Lambie
    Commented May 6, 2018 at 19:45

I don't think that kind of question is on-topic here.

I agree with Glorfindel's suggestion to consider Writers, since the help center says

Questions on these topics are welcome here:

  • Non-fiction, technical, scholarly, or journalistic writing.
  • Writing fiction, poetry, or song lyrics.
  • General copywriting, style, and organization.

Another possibility for questions about typography is the Graphic Design Stack Exchange.

However, keep in mind that questions that seem like "idea generation" (per the Writers help center) or "Brainstorming or idea gathering" (per the Graphic Design help center) are broadly off-topic on all Stack Exchange sites. So make sure your question is narrow enough in scope to avoid falling into one of these categories. For example, rather than asking "How can I use typography to indicate talking in another language?", which if taken literally could be answered with anyone's opinion, you might ask "What techniques are commonly used in published novels/graphic novels to indicate talking in another language?", which implies that answers should be based primarily on facts rather than on opinion and which narrows the scope to whatever category of literature you're interested in.

Some kinds of questions about typography are on-topic for ELU. The exact lines are probably blurry, but I would say that the main thing that makes a typography question on-topic here is some element of specificity with regard to the English language; it also helps if the question is clearly objective and interesting.

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