Calibri: The Crime-Solving Font

The well-known Microsoft font Calibri is everywhere — including criminal investigations:

As part of an investigation launched by the country’s Supreme Court, the Prime Minister’s daughter had released a supposedly exculpatory document signed and dated February 2, 2006. The document, however, had been printed in Calibri, which was not widely available until 2007. Investigators deemed the document to have been falsified, and the term “fontgate” began trending on Twitter.

. . .

Since 2007, Calibri has figured in several other forgery allegations. In 2012, the Turkish government accused approximately three hundred people of plotting a coup, on the basis of documents that had been printed in Calibri but were purported to date from as early as 2003. De Groot sent a form letter in response to the many inquiries he received from Pakistan. “In my opinion, the document in question was produced much later” than 2006, he wrote. While Microsoft had by then released a beta version of its Office suite that included Calibri, de Groot pointed out that only “computer nerds” and “font lovers” were using it. “Why would anyone use a completely unknown font for an official document?”

. . .

By coincidence, the font also figures in America’s ongoing Presidential scandal. One day before fontgate, Donald Trump, Jr., took to Twitter to release the e-mails he wrote while setting up a meeting between members of the Trump campaign and Russians offering dirt on Hillary Clinton. He included a short introductory note—“in order to be totally transparent, I am releasing the entire email chain of my emails”—typed in Calibri.

The New Yorker

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