I’m Guessing Romney is Cheap

When it comes to design, you can ask for “fast,” “cheap,” or “good.”

As I’m sure you’ve heard, Mitt Romney released an iPhone app this week and misspelled “America.” The app allows people to take photos of themselves, choose an “I’m with Mitt” slogan, and share the final product across social media. The misspelled slogan read: “A Better Amercia.”

Some poor web developer probably lost his/her job. I imagine that the developer was too busy fixing some buggy section of code, looking for that missing end paren, while also helping one campaign staff member insert jpgs into word docs, explaining to another that he/she has to set up the virtual private network client before the remote desktop connection will work, and helping a third fix the display problem of his/her html e-mails in Microsoft Outlook Web App. Because Romney is Romney, that person probably got fired.

You should always have multiple people involved in the copyediting process. I guarantee that your web developer is more concerned about copyediting the code so that the thing works right and that your designer is copyediting the negative space created by alignment, kerning, etc. so the thing looks right. If your developer is your designer and copyeditor, you are cheap.

If you work in publishing, then you are lucky to have a dedicated staff working through multiple proofs.  You should always have multiple proofs and a little time between each proof. The process takes time, i.e. cannot be fast.

“Amercia” is a huge mistake. Not only is it hysterical and damaging to anyone’s credibility, but it reveals how Romney conducts business, which is his resume for  president and his blueprint for how he would run the country. The “Amercia” misspelling means Romney is fast and cheap.

This week, I started to think about “Amercia” as a kind of parallel America, the America that would exist if Romney were president. I went through some old photographs of abandoned buildings and approximated the look of the app for some mock versions of Romney’s “Better Amercia.”



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