Glossary of Terms

Like any industry, ours uses a variety of terms. If you want to find out what they mean, you are in the right place! Simply click on a letter to see its list of terms. If the term you are looking for isn't listed in our glossary feel free to contact us so that we may help you as well as add it to our list.

A Glossary of Terms B Glossary of Terms C Glossary of Terms D Glossary of Terms E Glossary of Terms F Glossary of Terms G Glossary of Terms H Glossary of Terms I Glossary of Terms J Glossary of Terms K Glossary of Terms L Glossary of Terms M Glossary of Terms N Glossary of Terms
O Glossary of Terms P Glossary of Terms Q Glossary of Terms R Glossary of Terms S Glossary of Terms T Glossary of Terms U Glossary of Terms V Glossary of Terms W Glossary of Terms X Glossary of Terms Y Glossary of Terms Z Glossary of Terms Other Glossary of Terms

M weight

The actual weight of 1000 sheets of any given size of paper.

Machine Coated

Paper that has had a coating applied to either one or two of its sides during the papermaking process.

Machine Direction

The direction the paper web moved through the papermaking machine. The paper's grain direction is the same as the machine direction. See also: grain direction.

Machine Finish

A paper finish that results from the interaction of the paper with the Fourdrinier process as opposed to post machine embossing. Reference, Fourdrinier


One of the four process colors, CMYK, with M standing for magenta. Magenta is a predominately red color with some blue. Magenta, together with cyan and yellow, is also one of the three subtractive primary colors. Magenta is a color that is not a spectral color: that is to say, the hue cannot be generated by light of a single wavelength. A magenta hue can be witnessed by mixing equal amounts of red and blue light. As such, magenta is the complement of green: magenta pigments absorb green light.

Magnetic Black

Black pigments containing black iron oxides, used for magnetic ink character recognition.


An optical device used to observe very small details. Used for quality control. See also: linen tester; loupe.

Make Rready

Process of adjusting final plate on the press to fine tune or modify plate surface.


Imprinted space around edge of page.


To write up instructions, as on a dummy.


1. The blocking out of a portion of the printing plate during the exposure process. 2. A photo negative or positive used in the color separation process to color correct. Reference, PRINTING, mask.


Photographic proof made from all color flats and form composite proof showing color quality as well as accuracy, layout, and imposition before plates are made.

Matte Finish

A coated paper finish that goes through minimal calendaring. Reference, calendaring.

Mean Line

An imaginary X-line.


The width of type as measured in picas. Reference, picas.


A term used to describe finished artwork that is camera ready for reproduction, including all type, photos, illustrations etc. See pasteup.


Mega is an SI prefix in the SI system of units denoting 106 or 1 000 000.
Confirmed in 1960, it comes from the Greek μέγαç, meaning great.
For example, 1 MW (megawatt) = 1 000 000 watts = 1 000 kilowatts.
Abbreviation: M

Mesh Marks

A pattern of crosshatching visible in the dried ink of a screen printed piece. The condition may be caused by high viscosity ink that does not spread out properly or by the ink being pulled away as the screen is lifted off the printed surface.


The meter, is the basic unit of length in the International System of Units (SI: Systéme International d'Unités). It is equal to 10000/254 inches, approximately 39.37 inches.
Abbreviation: m
See Also: SI Prefix

Metropolitan Service Area

A group of ZIP codes usually in close proximity defining a large metropolitan area (e.g. New York City or Los Angeles).


Micro is an SI prefix in the SI system of units denoting 10-6 or one millionth. The symbol for it is the micro sign µ. In circumstances where only the latin alphabet is available, it is customarily written using the letter u (e.g. um for µm or uV for µV).
Confirmed in 1960, the prefix comes from the Greek µικρός (transliterated: mikros), meaning small.
Abbreviation: µ, u


See: midtone.


Those tones falling between halftone shadows and halftone highlights. Other Term: middletones. See also: quartertone.

Midtone Dot

Commonly taken as the area between highlight and shadow area of a subject's face in halftone image.


Milli is an SI prefix in the SI system of units denoting 10-3 or 1/1,000.
Adopted in 1795, the prefix comes from the Latin mille, meaning one thousand (the plural is milia).
Abbreviation: m


A millimeter, or millimetre, is equal to 1/1000 of a meter.
Abbreviation: mm
See Also: Milli, SI Prefix


Substances added to ink that promote abrasion resistance, block resistance, pinholing resistance, adhesion, slip and film flexibility.
Alternative Term: Additives


An undesirable halftone pattern produced by the incorrect angles of overprinting halftone screens.


A cotton fabric used on the dampening rollers of a printing press.

Molybdate Orange

An ink pigment made from precipitating lead molybdate, lead sulfate and lead chromate.


See kerning.


A term used to describe spotty or uneven ink absorption.


Coarse muslin glue placed on the back of book or pads for strengthening.

Mullen Testing

A specific test of tensile paper strength; an important factor if web presses are used for printing.

Multicolor press

two or more self contained single color printing presses that are joined sequentially to produce multiple colors on a sheet of paper in a single pass.


A registered tradename of Du Pont's clear polyester film. This durable film is used for stripping and outputting architectural and CAD drawings.

Internet Payments

Visa Logo  Mastercard Logo

Footer Divider

© 1999 - 2020  •  Keiger Graphic Communications  •  3735 Kimwell Drive, Winston-Salem, NC 27103
Contact our Webmaster if you have any questions or comments concerning this site.