Sunday, January 15, 2012

Grammar Question

In my last post, I referenced the internet in the lower case. The spell checker built into Blogger wanted me to capitalized it. That is consistent with the spell checker in Word. This may generate as much controversy as the apostrophe in Customs'.

According to Grammar Girl, my go-to source for these things, "Internet" is a proper noun referring to a specific network. Hence, it is properly capitalized. That advice is apparently consistent with several style manuals. The Grammarist goes the other way.

I don't think of the internet as a single network anymore, even though it is technically interconnected. Rather, it is now a medium for the dissemination of of information. Like radio and television. That is no longer a proper noun, but a common noun. No capitalizing "internet" for me.

I'm with the Grammarist. How about you?

1 comment:

Jim said...

Agree. Internet (capitalized here only because it is the first word in the sentence) is no longer a proper noun, like universe.

I also agree with your choice of "Customs' ". To me, I try to write as it would be pronounced, and it certainly does not have three syllables. But thanks to their new acronymic designation, we can keep everybody happy by useing "CBP's".

Now my own pet peeve is the plural of "bill of lading" and "power of attorney". Should be "bills" and "powers", not "ladings" and "attorneys".

Yours (note no apostrophe because it is an absolute possessive) truly (or should it be "Your truly?"),

Jim Dickeson
Import Export Geeks