What's in a Sign?

Yesterday, the question left on the table was “What makes a good sign?” Thank you for your excellent answers!

Here are some of your characteristics of a good sign:

Grabs Attention – a good sign hooks you, draws you closer
Leaves Impression – a good sign shocks you, leaves something that you can’t forget
Recognizable At a Glance – a good sign stands out from the crowd
Recognizable from a Distance – a good sign is visible!
Clarity – a good sign doesn’t take a genius to understand – just an honest, curious person
Important Message – a good sign says something that matters! Otherwise it is just a gaudy distraction.

To those, I would only add:

Honesty – a good sign has to be trustworthy. Bryan told me about a sign he encountered at a McDonald’s, that was supposed to direct traffic back onto the interstate, but ACTUALLY directed traffic right back into the McDonald’s parking lot! What a terrible sign!

Think about the signs you see every day. A lot of them fail the “good sign” test above, don’t they? The pop-up windows we all want to block… those frustrating ads on Facebook… the inescapable commercials about “Bob” or the guys talking to themselves in the mirror about their next doctor visit.

Or think about your last major doctor visit. Why do doctors have to be told to speak in layman’s terms to their patients? Why would you deliver such an important message to someone in language that, while it might seem clearer and easier for the doctor, does nothing but generate confusion and fear in the patient?

We live in a culture overflowing with fear, frustration, hopelessness, and loneliness. What would be a good sign to point people away from those kinds of places, and into better ones?

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About Nick Gill

orphan-poet-adoptee-soldier-prodigal-servant-husband- counselor-desperate seeker after my Father's face "I feel my body weakened by the years as people turn to gods of cruel design. Is it that they fear the pain of death, or is it that they fear the joy of life?" - Toad the Wet Sprocket

Posted on 27 April, 2010, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. I am about to take a communications class and judging by the required reading- we will take up this very topic at some point. Now I have another resource! Thanks.

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