In America and England Nicks are almost always on the front of the type (see the Notebook on Naming the Parts of Types for a definition of front and back) . In continental Europe they are often on the back.
(Photographs by Jens Jørgen Hansen, Bogtrykker, from his flickr posting at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/bogtrykkeren/8450548655/in/pool-pinmarks/ Clicking on either image above will show his un-cropped, full-size original photograph. Used by permission.)
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