On Being Older than the Internet.

In that recent Creators Hub roundup of “grammar mistakes” to avoid (most of which are actually matters of style), one Medium copy editor wonders,

“[W]hy are people trying to capitalize the internet!?”

This particular style point got a lot of attention in the comments. Maybe it struck a nerve because some of us (are you sitting down?) were born before the internet existed.

When the internet emerged, it was a brave new world: the Internet! Capitalized like the name of a newly discovered planet!

The word appeared in the Chicago Manual of Style for the first time in the 15th edition (2003), where it was capitalized. It was still capitalized in the 16th edition (2010). Not until the 17th edition (2017) was internet deemed to have become a generic term that should properly be lowercased.

Style is always changing.

Style Mistakes That Copyeditors Really Don’t Want You to Call “Grammar Mistakes.”

There’s a problem with this article about grammar mistakes to avoid: most of the pet peeves it catalogs are not grammar mistakes. “Between you and I” is a grammar mistake. Excess hyphenation, long hyperlinks, “unnecessarily capitalized words” — these are matters of style.

Creators Hub, says its editor, “may look to the AP Stylebook and Chicago Manual of Style for grammar and style rules,” but “we also have an internal style guide that the copy editors refer to when editing a story.”

Three styles? No. If you have…

A new advice column, because our brains need grammar

Photo by Pascal Debrunner on Unsplash

I’m holed up in my house most of the time. I spend all day in my slippers. I sit for hours at a stretch obsessing over tiny problems that most people wouldn’t even notice.

I’m a copyeditor. This is business as usual.

The copyeditor’s job is to help a piece of writing become its best self. That means looking closely at how that piece of writing works, inspecting the construction of each phrase and sentence. …

Honolulu Quirk

Hermit at heart, copyeditor, pseudonymous author.

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