Wednesday, November 24, 2010

AP Style - driving thru some recent changes

Some recent changes in or additions to AP style:

  • drive-thru: AP has adopted the more colloquial spelling "thru." (It's the most common and makes sense to me.)
  • firsthand: One word for adjective or adverb. (Conforms to AP's previous style on secondhand.)
  • handheld (n.) / hand-held (adj.): Now all we have to do is wait for the rants about "handheld" as a noun. You may safely ignore them.
  • cardholder: For those holding credit cards, for instance. But credit card holder. (Credit cardholder, of course, could mean something entirely different.)
  • nonprofit: AP really shouldn't need to have clarified this; I thought its existing language was eminently clear. But there were enough questions about hyphen or not, so it decided to weigh in.
  • bed-and-breakfast: Note the hyphens.
  • problem-solving: So, it's always been clear that "the problem-solving plan" was the correct use as an adjective. But I guess we now also write "he is problem-solving" or "Problem-solving" is fun? I have a better idea - skip the jargon and write "Solving problems is fun."
  • do's and don'ts: Was there really any question on this?
There are a few others, but, hey, you really should buy the stylebook.

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2 Comments:

At 8/6/13, 2:01 PM, Anonymous Nora said...

Wow. I'm shocked and disheartened by the acceptance of the misplaced apostrophe in do's and don'ts. If we follow this reasoning, it should read: do's and don't's. In addition, dumbing down the spelling of through is an insult. I don't accept either, nor would I recommend that people writing public business messages cave on these issues. To me, these examples illustrate laziness, a herd mentality and lack of leadership and professionalism. Tsk, tsk.

 
At 8/6/13, 2:42 PM, Blogger Doug Fisher said...

The apostrophe in do's is acceptable. The "do" entry in Webster's New World Collegiate 4th lists "do's" first (scroll down to midpage), and since AP follows that dictionary, it is logical to adopt that as style.

Merriam-Webster, on the other hand, uses "dos," and American Heritage 4th lists "dos" as the first choice, but allows "do's." (You'll find it lower in the same entry as the WNW at Your Dictionary.)

 

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