Cnoc Fhéilim, Bóthar Bhaile an Róba, Cathair na Mart, Co. Mhaigh Eo Evertype: The ESTIMATED SIGN
[Evertype]  The ESTIMATED SIGN in implementation Home
 
 The ESTIMATED SIGN in implementationThe ESTIMATED SIGN has been placed at U+212E in the UCS. It is also a member of the WGL4 character set.

Some persons have claimed that the ESTIMATED SIGN is not a character. Apart from the fact that all characters in the UCS are characters, the claim appears to be based on the assertion that the glyph is invariable. Zapf Dingbats are also part of the UCS even though their glyphs are nominally invariant.

Market reality, however, is that typesetting and printing houses throughout Europe make use of the ESTIMATED SIGN in preparation of packaging, and its presence in character sets to be used in Europe is a definite advantage.

I found online "Council Directive 75/106/EEC of 1974-12-19 on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to the making-up by volume of certain prepackaged liquids", which contains the following text:

3. INSCRIPTIONS AND MARKINGS
All prepackages made up in accordance with this Directive shall bear on the package the following markings affixed in such a manner as to be indelible, easily legible and visible on the prepackage in normal conditions of presentation:

3.1. [...]

3.2. [...]

3.3. a small "e" at least 3 mm high, placed in the same field of vision as the indication of the nominal volume of the contents, certifying that the prepackage meets the requirements of this Directive.

This letter shall have the form shown in the drawing contained in Annex II, Section 3, to Council Directive No 71/316/EEC.

Article 12 of this latter Directive shall apply mutatis mutandis.

It is clear from this last line the the Directive intends the glyph to be invariable.

This drawing from Directive 71/316/EEC, I found on on a Swedish site.

e-mark

Here is some relevant European legislation:

  • Council Directive 75/106/EEC on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to the making-up by volume of certain prepackaged liquids, 1974-12-19, (Official Journal L 324, 1975-12-16). http://europa.eu.int/eur-lex/en/consleg/pdf/1975/en_1975L0106_do_001.pdf
  • Council Directive 76/211/EEC on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to the making-up by weight or by volume of certain prepackaged products, 1976-01-20, (Official Journal L 046, 1976-02-21, p. 1)
  • Council Directive 71/316/EEC on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to common provisions for both measuring instruments and methods of metrological control, 1971-07-26, (Official Journal L 202, 1971-09-06, p. 1).

I checked a number of packages in my house. Most which had the ESTIMATED SYMBOL had the canonical one. I did find a difference between the symbols used by one company. The left ESTIMATED SIGN in the illustration below is from Cadbury's Drinking Chocolate; the right one is from Cadbury's Cocoa. The proportions of the right one appear to be 1 : 1, while the canonical one's proportions are 1 : 0.9. Does this mean that the statement on the Cadbury's Cocoa is invalid?

cadbury

In Helsinki this month I bought a bottle of European beer, labelled in six European languages. I reproduce the back label below. It does not use the canonical ESTIMATED SYMBOL. What is the legal status of this? Is it an attempt on the part of the company to deceive the public as to the estimated volume of the bottle of beer? Of course not. It is a typographical solution made by someone who had not read Council Directive 75/106/EEC of 1974-12-19.

bier

The ESTIMATED SIGN should be made available in large subsets of UCS characters intended for use in Europe.


 
HTML Michael Everson, Evertype, 48B Gleann na Carraige, Cill Fhionntain, Baile Átha Cliath 13, Éire, 2004-01-21

Copyright © 1993-2006 Evertype. All Rights Reserved