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Thursday, July 10, 2014 - 6:01am
Erin Brenner
07/10/14 News Roundup: How We Work

For your Thursday reading pleasure, the News Roundup offers counsel on editing ethics, a tip for improved accuracy, and how to settle workplace disputes. Read on!

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Wednesday, July 9, 2014 - 11:20am
Adrienne Montgomerie
Copy Editing Sports

Designed as a journalism guide as well as a style guide, The Canadian Press Stylebook doles out advice about writing clearly about sports as well as specifics related to copy editing. You’ll find these points and more in the sports section that begins on page 152 of the 16th edition:

  • Identify the sport early in every story. It’s called soccer in Canada, however “wrong” that may sound to the devotees.
  • City names used as team names take singular verbs.
  • Team titles (even singular ones) usually require plural verbs.
  • Avoid unnecessary possessives. For example, the Blue Jays pitcher.
  • Avoid nicknames unless they are long-standing.
  • Long-established and...
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Tuesday, July 8, 2014 - 1:21pm
Dawn McIlvain Stahl
Bulletin of Bibliography: Auto-Fill Bibliographies & the copyeditor who hated th

Having recently spent some time filling in a pile of missing references in an academic work, I was surprised to find that I did not hate the online bibliography creator I used.

I first encountered auto-generated bibliographies five or more years ago, when an author informed me that my many edits to a reference list couldn’t be correct because the bibliography had been created using BibMe. Not a great introduction.

What was true then is true now -- even the best bibliography generators still need careful review.

And based on the quick trials I put them through, my old enemy BibMe turns out to be one of the best and the one I ended up using. The website interface is colorful but relatively uncluttered, perhaps...

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Tuesday, July 8, 2014 - 8:40am
Erin Brenner
Tip of the Week: Breaking the Rules to Save Our Sanity

Most of us understand that the rules in style books are guidelines. The publisher chooses whether to follow all the rules of, say, The Chicago Manual of Style or to pick and choose based on what works for the publication. The changes or exceptions are then listed in a house style guide or in a project style sheet.

Generally, copyeditors are told which rules to follow and which to ignore. We’re given a copy of the house style guide and asked to keep (or follow) a style sheet.

How do we know, though, when to recommend breaking with either the style manual or house style? What kind of occasion calls for it?

  • When the style rule inhibits clear communication
  • When the style rule results in clunky writing
  • When the style rule causes...
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Tuesday, July 8, 2014 - 6:02am
Erin Brenner
07/08/14 News Roundup: Expand Your Vocabulary

Are you exploring acro-yoga or are you more interested in the true meaning of freedom? Today’s News Roundup looks at words new and old.

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Monday, July 7, 2014 - 12:36pm
Dawn McIlvain Stahl
Job opening: Managing Editor for Travel Organization Website and Social, DC

McMurry/TMG (Copyediting’s own publisher) is seeking a managing editor in Washington, DC, for a leading travel organization’s website and social media presence. McMurry/TMG has 30 years of custom-publishing experience and is now the largest independent content-marketing agency in the United States.

The managing editor will direct the digital content and oversee the daily operations of the organization’s website, newsletter, and social media. Job duties will include creating and curating content, managing the editorial team, creating and managing an editorial calendar, maintaining an engaging social media presence, monitoring analytics, ensuring quality, and attending conferences.  

This full-time position...

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Monday, July 7, 2014 - 9:14am
Adrienne Montgomerie
How To See and Insert Non-Printing Characters in Word

Last week we looked at special characters in Word, but there is a subset of special characters that can help with document formatting, but that don’t print: hard space, hard line return, section break, page break, tab, and so forth. Word calls these non-printing characters. To see the non-printing characters in your document, do one of the following:

  • pilcrow icon [ ¶ ] for Show/Hide on the Formatting (or Home) ribbon*
  • ⌘ + 8 (or on a PC: ctrl + *)

A non-breaking space can be used between elements such as a digit and the unit of measure  (such as 20 °C) to make sure they are never broken over the end of a line. To type one, hold option while you press the space bar (on a Windows machine, type ctrl+ shift + spacebar). You might also use a non-...

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How to
Thursday, July 3, 2014 - 2:50pm
Dawn McIlvain Stahl
Fireworks or Flag Works? A Stars and Stripes Vocab Game

We’re gearing up for a happy holiday weekend here in the United States as we celebrate Independence Day tomorrow. Finalize fireworks-watching plans? Check. Make sure flag-displaying etiquette is correct? Check. Use the proper vocabulary during fireworks watching and flag displaying? Better check!

Do you know your fireworks from your flag works? Match the term with its appropriate definition. [Difficulty level: moderate]

Word list  

brocade    canton     charge     crossette


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Thursday, July 3, 2014 - 9:19am
Mark Allen
Not to be Negative, But There is No 'Per' in 'Pejorative'

When I type pejorative, I must consciously stop my left forefinger from dropping down on the r key after my middle finger taps the e. When I hear it spoken, it’s often unclear whether there is an r sound at the end of the first syllable.

I’m not alone in this confusion. Message boards are full of perjorative in relation to the controversy over the name of the Washington, D.C., NFL football team. The Sydney Morning Herald printed perjorative twice last month. Perhaps Australian Attorney General George Brandis pronounced the nonexistent r in the word when he was discussing whether the government should refer to East Jerusalem as “disputed” or “occupied.” Subsequent stories by different reporters used the...

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Thursday, July 3, 2014 - 5:50am
Andrea Altenburg
7/2/2014 News Roundup

Decoding the world cup and owning up to mistakes when they happen, that is on today’s News Roundup.

Are you a wonk? Is it a slang term? Maybe not. (Grammarphobia)

‘Sudden Death’ at El Mundial: Decoding the World Cup (Lingua Franca)

Mapped Out: Everyone makes mistakes (The Editor’s Desk)


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