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You're getting downvoted a little unfairly. I disagree with you that old-style figs are like long S's. I strongly disagree that we're better off not having the option. I'm inclined to believe that people with visceral negative reactions to old-style figs are really just reacting to being conditioned to lining figures.

But having said that: the kernel of easy- to- agree- with in your comment is, for a lot of the figures that tend to get typeset on web pages, lining figures are the more appropriate choice.

That said, when set in running text and when describing things that are, effectively, proper nouns (IP addresses, street addresses, phone numbers), old-style figures often read better and are more attractive.

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