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Two spaces or one after a period?

versailles
Community Guru
Rene K Member Since: Jul 10, 2014
31 of 44

@Nichola L wrote:

spacing in France is completely different. And although one space is recommended between sentences, there is invariably a space between the last word and a semi- colon, a colon, question mark, and exclamation mark, for example. 


Off topic: In French, all punctuation signs that are consisting of two parts shall have a space before and after. Easy to remember. :-)

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"Where darkness shines like dazzling light"   —William Ashbless
jcullinan
Community Guru
Jess C Member Since: Feb 18, 2015
32 of 44

@Tiffany S wrote:

@Jess C wrote:

 


If you're typing on an eighties-era typewriter, sure use two spaces. But if you're using modern word processing software and modern fonts, it's completely and totally wrong. Always. :-p


 On what basis do you declare that following the AP Style Guide is "completely and totally wrong"? 


AP Style Guide: "Use a single space after a period."


tlsanders
Community Guru
Tiffany S Member Since: Jan 15, 2016
33 of 44

@Jess C wrote:

Two spaces is clearly wrong, and there are so many reasons, but old-school for old-school's sake will always be stubborn. My irritation with the refusal of some to conform is that it makes more work for me when I'm setting text, but they're paying for it, so whatever.

For many of us who were typing and reading for decades under the old system, it continues to look wrong, crowded and undifferentiated.
Of course, as professionals, we conform to what the client wants (just as you are). But, to assume that your preference for the current method is correct and anyone who disagrees with you must simply be stubborn and clinging to "old-school for old-schools" sake takes a special kind of willful blindness. Perhaps you'd find people who don't fall in line less irritating if you could find your way to considering the possibility that they have legitimate views and reasons for their own preferences.

 

 

purplepony
Community Guru
Pat M Member Since: Jun 18, 2016
34 of 44

Tiffany S. stated:

 

@Jess C wrote:

Two spaces is clearly wrong, and there are so many reasons, but old-school for old-school's sake will always be stubborn. My irritation with the refusal of some to conform is that it makes more work for me when I'm setting text, but they're paying for it, so whatever.

For many of us who were typing and reading for decades under the old system, it continues to look wrong, crowded and undifferentiated.
Of course, as professionals, we conform to what the client wants (just as you are). But, to assume that your preference for the current method is correct and anyone who disagrees with you must simply be stubborn and clinging to "old-school for old-schools" sake takes a special kind of willful blindness. Perhaps you'd find people who don't fall in line less irritating if you could find your way to considering the possibility that they have legitimate views and reasons for their own preferences.
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Tiffany, I'd give you 10 kudos for this post if I could!  Woman Wink
colettelewis
Community Guru
Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
35 of 44

Pat, I have to point out that editors are required to follow styles according to publishers' or university/school/college requirements.

 

In my time, I  have edited many novels and hundreds of academic articles - some have been for American journals some for UK journals, which apart from obvious spelling differences do not vary that much in their requirements. Whether or not people agree with deep paragraph indentations or short indentations, or no indentations at all, or  single or double spacing between sentences, depends entirely on publishing requirements and consistency.

 

If - oh bliss - someone specifically asks me to correct something according to a style; be it CMOS, OMS, APA, MLA,  or AP to mention just a few, then I, for one, am in editorial heaven - I know what I have to do.

 

Recently, I have too often edited writers who self publish, and who contrary to advice, have insisted on fancy fonts and spacing with disastrous, or at least, non-productive  results.

 

In spite of APA's requirements for the double space, the general publishing convention (in English) is for a single space between sentences and actually, has been so for some time.

 

purplepony
Community Guru
Pat M Member Since: Jun 18, 2016
36 of 44

Nichola (and all other Posters on this thread), thanks for the lesson.  Woman Wink  It's certainly not my area of expertise, but I've always considered punctuation, grammar... to be very important and have done my best to abide by the rules I've learned.

colettelewis
Community Guru
Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
37 of 44

@Pat M wrote:

Nichola (and all other Posters on this thread), thanks for the lesson.  Woman Wink  It's certainly not my area of expertise, but I've always considered punctuation, grammar... to be very important and have done my best to abide by the rules I've learned.


 Pat, the problem is that the goalposts change all the time.

 

When I first started editing in UK English (one miillion years ago) I was taught certain editing/proofreading signs and symbols, which I kept on with until I did a refresher course not too long ago, only to discover that some ingrained signs and symbols had changed - this caused quite a short circuit in my brain - and even having respectably passed the refresher course, I find myself having to think about how I write certain proofreading symbols when proofreading hard copy, which thankfully, is not so often these days!

jcullinan
Community Guru
Jess C Member Since: Feb 18, 2015
38 of 44

@Tiffany S wrote:

@Jess C wrote:

Two spaces is clearly wrong, and there are so many reasons, but old-school for old-school's sake will always be stubborn. My irritation with the refusal of some to conform is that it makes more work for me when I'm setting text, but they're paying for it, so whatever.

For many of us who were typing and reading for decades under the old system, it continues to look wrong, crowded and undifferentiated.
Of course, as professionals, we conform to what the client wants (just as you are). But, to assume that your preference for the current method is correct and anyone who disagrees with you must simply be stubborn and clinging to "old-school for old-schools" sake takes a special kind of willful blindness. Perhaps you'd find people who don't fall in line less irritating if you could find your way to considering the possibility that they have legitimate views and reasons for their own preferences.

 

 


I've never seen adhering to professional standards called "willful blindness" before.

This question isn't about personal preferences, but about correct and professional formatting of text in the Latin-derived alphabet. Unless there is a very specific reason, which is rare (APA allows two spaces in DRAFT manuscripts, but recommends one for the final product), the professional standard requires one space, and one space only, after a period, exclamation point, or question mark. MLA, AP, Chicago, the US GPO Style Manual, Oxford, the MHRA, the Canadian Style Guide for both English and French, the European Commission English Style Guide, the EU Interinstitutional Style Guide, even the Australian Style Manual, ALL OF THEM require one space, and one space only. In fact, double spaces were hardly ever used in Europe at all in the first place - this was pretty much an invention of the American manual typewriter.

There IS a correct answer to this question, whether or not it meets your individual taste. Go look it up!

djnygaard
Active Member
Debbie N Member Since: Apr 26, 2017
39 of 44

I agree with Ravindra's comment, "Just follow your style guide."

 

Nichola points to CMoS, Hart's Rules, and OSM all state to use single space. AP Styleguide also requires single space.

 

Also, as on "old dog", I challenge myself every day to learn something new. Otherwise, life would get too boring.

 

Smiley Very Happy

ravi_iitian
Community Guru
Ravindra B Member Since: Sep 27, 2015
40 of 44

@Jennifer D wrote:

At the risk of igniting a debate as volatile as the recent Oxford Comma debate - two spaces or one after a period?

 

I am *just* old enough that my high school was still teaching "typing" rather than "computing", albeit on computers. My typing teacher was an older woman with a remarkably straight back and glasses on a chain, whose husband built little wooden boxes to go over our keyboards so we couldn't peek, and who carried a ruler to rap over our wrists if we dared to rest them on our desks. She strictly enforced the "two spaces" rule, as did the typing program we used to learn.

 

It took me nearly twenty years to break the habit, but I am finally free of it. I am now a convert to single spacing. It seems this is still controversial, however, judging by this article and its follow-up.

 

Thoughts?


Jennifer, you do know how to stir thing up! Smiley Happy

 

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