A highlight of the national conference of the American Copy Editors Society has been the AP Stylebook sessions, featuring Darrell Christian and David Minthorn, two of the three Stylebook editors. Both are understated fellows who treat every Stylebook change as no big deal before Twitter erupts in glee or consternation over website as a single word, hyphenless email, or over as a perfectly fine synonym for more than.
When the Associated Press Stylebook editors decided to stop abbreviating state names in stories, they soon succumbed to backlash and reversed course. Four years later, they’ve reintroduced this change.
We can love it or hate it, but the change has logic and simplicity behind it. We don’t have to adopt it—it’s just style—but we probably should.
Next week is National Library Week, and copyeditors are part of the celebration. The Oxford University Press folks are freeing up all of their online resources to help celebrate libraries and librarians. That means Oxford Dictionaries will be free for us to try, with all its related resources included. So will the Oxford English Dictionary.
I’ve long been a proponent of online-first for newspapers—focusing on the Web and other electronic methods to get news up soon after it breaks, and then refitting digital stories for the paper edition. But no one seems to be able to do it right.
A copyeditor's worklife is spent in anonymous toiling, but every year the American Copy Editors Society places two copyeditors up on a pedestal so others can honor them for their contributions to the craft. This year, Katharine O’Moore-Klopf and Alex Cruden are celebrated.
Yesterday, at the American Copy Editors Society’s annual conference, AP Stylebook’s David Minhorn and Darrell Christian revealed some of the latest changes in AP style. Although they said they didn’t have any bombs to drop, one went off anyway.
Over is now “acceptable in all uses to indicate greater numerical value.” More than can still be used to mean the same, but that didn’t stop some attendees from tweeting items like:
Announcements about new ways to widely distribute creative works simultaneously thrill us and worry us. Those who work with writers and other artists tend to favor access to information and the broad exposure such moves create. But we worry about the further surrender of individual control.
This is true for written works, but the focus in the past week was on the library of photographs owned by Getty Images. Getty announced its images could be shared and used on noncommercial websites.
National Grammar Day is hard to contain in just one day or within the borders of one nation. Of course, every day is grammar day to a copyeditor
National Grammar Day is March 4, easy to remember because it can be said as “march forth,” which is a sentence in itself with imperative verb and implied subject. Of course, “march fourth” also is a sentence, theoretically useful for establishing the order of bands in a parade.
There is something safe about the simple form of haiku. Structure can give the poet freedom, a simple structure especially so. Free verse forces the writer to create the rhythm as well as the words. Haiku forces us into a familiar pattern, one that is fairly easy to exploit.