Design seems like such a simple, elementary thing when you think about it, but hordes of people keep getting the basics wrong, often with hilarious and side-splitting results. Buildings are hard to design, as are other objects, but we usually take the layout of sentences and phrases for granted, as though everyone will be able to understand us no matter how.we.words.our.place.

Well, the truth is, designing text so it’s readable isn’t as easy as you’d expect. There’s a system to it. There are processes that must be followed. Rules that ought never be broken. Except that those rules are broken all the time by some oblivious people. Bored Panda collected some of the best examples of incredibly bad text design that is wonderfully enjoyable to make fun of. So upvote the best/worst fails, see if your friends can figure out what’s actually written, and let us know in the comments if you've seen design fails that compare to these ones.

We know how much you enjoy design fails, so you can read Bored Panda’s previous posts about them here, here, here, here, and here.

#1

How Do I Apply?

How Do I Apply?

sevenonesicks Report

Vic 2 weeks ago

The person preparing this sign was surely tripping on something..

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#2

Noted

Noted

jhoang0730 Report

Thomas Murphy 2 weeks ago

calling the police on Willesden Electricity Department

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#3

Apparently Scary Jesus Is A Thing

Apparently Scary Jesus Is A Thing

Bausdria Report

Vic 2 weeks ago

When you are on a fishing trip. Walks on water behind you and goes BOO!!

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One of the online communities where similar text design fails are shared daily is the subreddit ‘Don’t Dead Open Inside,’ which prides itself on collecting the most egregious examples of signs and media that don’t make any sense if you read them normally. The community, which was established in May 2014, is large, having grown to over 513,000 members.

Bored Panda reached out to the 'Don't Dead Open Inside' subreddit moderators. According to one of them, the community was inspired to form because of the 'Don't Dead Open Inside' frame from the very first episode of the hit TV show The Walking Dead.

According to one moderator, people make mistakes while designing text because "they're either not thinking or they want to be original. Our main mission statement is to show them that they are wrong."

They also had advice for those individuals willing to step up their game design-wise: "People in the west read left to right, then top to bottom. Do not "liven up" your text by making it "quirky". Hard to read means lost attention which translates to lost revenue."

#4

Five Extremely Slow Children Playing

Five Extremely Slow Children Playing

chunkledom Report

#5

This Terribly Worded Sign I Saw Today. Sorry, I’ll Pick Up My Dog’s Poop... Wouldn’t Want To Ruin Your Child Eating Experience

This Terribly Worded Sign I Saw Today. Sorry, I’ll Pick Up My Dog’s Poop... Wouldn’t Want To Ruin Your Child Eating Experience

KevenNotKevin Report

Sarahí Covarrubias 2 weeks ago

Like Maruchan's cups say: Warning serving children

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#6

Well, Uh... I Guess That's A Good Motto

Well, Uh... I Guess That's A Good Motto

doubletheaction Report

Kaisu 2 weeks ago

At least they're honest!

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Canva has some handy tips for those of you willing to up your design game when it comes to words. For example, Canva suggests that you limit the number of fonts that you use and use simple ones, rather than complex ones that might not mesh together well.

#7

Attention

Attention

rosco555555 Report

Sveta Smirnova 2 weeks ago

No wonder the toilet is always empty

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#8

Thanks For The Advice

Thanks For The Advice

zapsquad Report

Martata 2 weeks ago

If anxiety could speak

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#9

Baby Needs Beers & Wines

Baby Needs Beers & Wines

Report

Lana Raven 2 weeks ago

i think it’s mommy who needs that

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Spacing, something most of us rarely think about, is also important and can bring about radically different effects simply by eliminating the negative space between letters, words, and sentences.

#10

Experience

Experience

lilyber Report

TheExtremeSmell 2 weeks ago

Where do I sign up?!

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#11

This Habitat For Humanity Van

This Habitat For Humanity Van

EasterChimp Report

Hello it Smee 2 weeks ago

Hahaha, this is my favorite one on this list

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#12

So My Campus Had A Suicide Awareness And Prevention Day

So My Campus Had A Suicide Awareness And Prevention Day

KBid-1998 Report

Hello it Smee 2 weeks ago

Come try our Kool Aide, it's killer.

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Meanwhile, colors are equally important: use them to your advantage to create harmony between different parts of the text. Use contrasting and complementary colors. Lines can be used to guide the reader’s attention and create symmetry; however, badly used lines can turn a sign or a design into a catastrophe. Think you’ve got all that? Good. Let us know how you’d fix the text designs in this list.

#13

No Safety. Smoking First

No Safety. Smoking First

Report

Grapeling 2 weeks ago

Light the place on fire while you're at it :p

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#14

Who Else Is Donating To End Children?

Who Else Is Donating To End Children?

Gummie Report

Hello it Smee 2 weeks ago

Sound like a vasectomy advertisement.

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#15

Don't Save A Life. Be Afraid To Give Blood

Don't Save A Life. Be Afraid To Give Blood

youllneverfindmeman Report

Grapeling 2 weeks ago

Thank you this is very helpful. I'll tell me friends too :D

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#16

Do I Push?

Do I Push?

Jean_Putt Report

Orillion 2 weeks ago

If you can't push it, why is it even there!?

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#17

If You Hard, Then You Hard

If You Hard, Then You Hard

Vengedpotty Report

Vic 2 weeks ago

Yeah what can you do about it.. not like you control it..

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#18

Sorry Guys, You Can’t Let Your Pets Cook Bicycles Here

Sorry Guys, You Can’t Let Your Pets Cook Bicycles Here

PikachuIce Report

Restless 2 weeks ago

But my dogs love cooking bicycles!

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#19

Hood On vs. Hood Off

Hood On vs. Hood Off

m_delacour Report

Jjjane20 2 weeks ago

In case you'd like to change your mind.

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#20

Please Do Not Take It Home. Leave Litter Here

Please Do Not Take It Home. Leave Litter Here

freshcheezels Report

Grapeling 2 weeks ago

What do they LeArN in environmental management these days???

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#21

Just Purchased This Low Quality Fried Chicken At The Grocery Store

Just Purchased This Low Quality Fried Chicken At The Grocery Store

mountainsofkong Report

Rissie 2 weeks ago

Honest advertising?

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#22

If You Were In A Car, Would You Know What Accident To Do?

If You Were In A Car, Would You Know What Accident To Do?

MrGrampton Report

Holosexual 2 weeks ago

This is so stressful no I wouldn't know what accident to do, this is too much responsibility

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#23

Smash Immigrants Welcome Racism

Smash Immigrants Welcome Racism

Dbanzai Report

Vic 2 weeks ago

Racist Hulk be Racist..

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#24

Honey, I Think We're Supposed To Turn Right

Honey, I Think We're Supposed To Turn Right

Lolawolf Report

TheExtremeSmell 2 weeks ago

Don’t dead open inside

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#25

I Only Saw The Left Window At First And Got Very Confused

I Only Saw The Left Window At First And Got Very Confused

generationfire Report

Martata 2 weeks ago

Selsful living is a good way of putting it

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#26

This New Wall Art In My Office

This New Wall Art In My Office

Bitemarkz Report

Fuzztone 2 weeks ago

I have no idea what it is even trying to say.

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#27

Our To Help Trollies You Move

Our To Help Trollies You Move

INTP36 Report

Lazy Panda 2 weeks ago

This doesn’t make sense either way...

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#28

7 Surprising Black Ways To Use Beans

7 Surprising Black Ways To Use Beans

maximum_chungus Report

Hello it Smee 2 weeks ago

I get the stupid title, but seriously black bean smoothies sounds gross!!!!!!!

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#29

They Are, In Fact, A Particular Sub-Species Of Rock

They Are, In Fact, A Particular Sub-Species Of Rock

192747585939 Report

Martata 2 weeks ago

The safe ones are not so bad

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#30

So I Fart Old Dust

So I Fart Old Dust

variousbirds Report

Jason Doakes 2 weeks ago

Well, this makes just as much sense as the original thought...

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#31

The Design School I Graduated From Sent This Postcard Out

The Design School I Graduated From Sent This Postcard Out

edrini Report

Hello it Smee 2 weeks ago

No thanks, you haven't even figured it out yet.

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#32

Stand Hong With Kong

Stand Hong With Kong

pedrojalapa Report

European other 2 weeks ago

Hong and Kong need to get together

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#33

When Your Gym Tryies Hard To Motivate You But Fails To Make Any Sense

When Your Gym Tryies Hard To Motivate You But Fails To Make Any Sense

james_pawned Report

Jessamyn Zolcznski 2 weeks ago

Trying to be Yoda you are

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#34

Truly Inspiring

Truly Inspiring

littlefisch2020 Report

Hello it Smee 2 weeks ago

Looks like a drunk text.

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#35

Vicious Inc... What?!

Vicious Inc... What?!

thedirtyjackal Report

Jane Doe 2 weeks ago

Well he’s not lying there, incest is usually vicious

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#36

This Monstrosity

This Monstrosity

Hantook Report

Nagawa (Cofa) Kishiki 2 weeks ago

So they are happy when I'm miserable?

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#37

From Afar, This Sign Has A Completely Different Meaning

From Afar, This Sign Has A Completely Different Meaning

tannerclary3 Report

Sarahí Covarrubias 2 weeks ago

Someone has problems with children

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#38

Wet Private Clay Parties

Wet Private Clay Parties

bouncingredgrape Report

Tiggy Darling 2 weeks ago

My favourite. But I do have the humour of a 9 year old.

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#39

Burn Increase

Burn Increase

SabertoothCSGO Report

Jjjane20 2 weeks ago (edited)

And this must be higher than she is 😂

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#40

Never Ever Ever Beef. Frozen Always

Never Ever Ever Beef. Frozen Always

ManWitoutSocks Report

Note: this post originally had 108 images. It’s been shortened to the top 40 images based on user votes.