Wednesday, July 07, 2004

Style abroad

The Guardian UK is publishing its style guide this week, an updated version of what's already online. Reader's editor Ian Mayes shares:
The style guide is to some extent a rod to beat the journalists with, but the benefits of reader participation more than compensate for the bruises.
What's included?
It suggests that a preference (which I share) for using a singular verb with "none" is simply deferring to "a (very persistent) myth". Plural, it says, is acceptable and often sounds more natural: "None of the current squad are good enough." Collins, the Guardian's default dictionary, says: "None is a singular pronoun and should be used with a singular form of a verb."
And on split infinitives:
"It is perfectly acceptable to sensibly split infinitives, and stubbornly to resist doing so can sound awkward and make for ambiguity." The authors suggest that George Bernard Shaw got it about right "after an editor tinkered with his infinitives", when he said: "I don't care if he is made to go quickly, or to quickly go - but go he must."
And diacriticals?
Subeditors, in fact, are now expected to place accents correctly on words in French, German, Spanish and Irish Gaelic (but not on anglicised French words such as cafe, "apart from exposé, résumé"). Consistency is an elusive little animal.
And, lest you think no Brits believe in important hyphenations:
It is not exactly a zero-tolerance manifesto.


At 3:12 PM, July 07, 2004, Blogger Mike said...

Shouldn't it be "résumé"?

At 3:47 PM, July 07, 2004, Blogger Peter Fisk said...

The Guardian style guide sounds a hell of a lot more competent and informative than the Truss book.

At 12:01 PM, July 08, 2004, Blogger Nicole said...

The resume goof was a translating one on my part. Thanks for pointing it out; it's fixed now.

And this is as good a time as any to remind: AP calls for no accents.

At 8:09 PM, July 08, 2004, Blogger Peter Fisk said...

>>AP calls for no accents.<<

I can't find that entry. What's it listed under?

At 10:16 PM, July 08, 2004, Blogger Nicole said...

Ah, I seem to have made it up.

... Perhaps because AP can't trasmit the accents over the wires and therefore never uses any?

At 10:16 PM, July 08, 2004, Blogger Nicole said...

(Good catch.)


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