Searching \ for 'use of apostrophe on initials (was: Re: [EE] How t' in subject line. ()
Make payments with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure! Help us get a faster server
FAQ page: www.piclist.com/techref/index.htm?key=how+OT%5D
Search entire site for: 'use of apostrophe on initials (was: Re: [EE] How t'.

Truncated match.
PICList Thread
'use of apostrophe on initials (was: Re: [EE] How t'
2008\01\08@213141 by Nate Duehr

face
flavicon
face
Jinx wrote:
>> I have a bunch of CDs
>
> BTW, congratulations and thank you for appropriate use, or
> not, of an apostrophe

From one of the comments on:
http://grammar.about.com/b/2007/09/03/more-commonly-confused-words.htm

"The use of the apostrophe after initials (LP’s, VIP’s) is actually the
older style: it was traditionally taught as the only correct form until
the past couple decades, when leaving the apostrophe out became an
acceptable variant. "

I wholeheartedly agree, and distinctly remember prior to e-mail and the
over-use of initials and acronyms for everything under the sun, being
marked down by grammar instructors for not using an apostrophe on
initials and acronyms.

I can probably even find some English style-guides around here somewhere
that define the use of the apostrophe on initials as proper usage,
somewhere on the home bookshelf.  I enjoy watching these rules change
over the years, so I keep the old ones.

I can also find plenty examples from well-known literature that use an
apostrophe after initials and acronyms.

The desires of the world appear to be changing in regards to this use of
the apostrophe, but it was taught to entire generations this way.  My
typing fingers haven't learned yet not to do it -- the trauma of losing
points on what were otherwise A+ papers will do that to you.

(GRIN)

If you really don't like it, start a campaign against the over-use of
initials to name things.  Tell all your friends that they're required to
call them Compact Discs and not CD's (yes, I left the apostrophe on
purpose, and yes the officially trademarked name of the technology is
spelled with a c in Disc, not a k as in Disk) and they're Digital Video
Discs and not DVD's.

Etc.

Nate

2008\01\08@223746 by Jinx

face picon face
> "The use of the apostrophe after initials (LP’s, VIP’s) is actually the
> older style: it was traditionally taught as the only correct form until
> the past couple decades, when leaving the apostrophe out became
> an acceptable variant"

Of my collection of dictionaries, only the 1978 US Random House
says specifically that an apostrophe is used for plurals of acronyms.
The others (going back into the 1950s) may not have felt it worth
mentioning. Generally it's used (as in it's) to show the omission of
letters, eg o'clock or fo'c's'le. But you might think, in these lazy days,
the fewer characters the better, hence CDs not CD's. If you use
upper-case for the acronym, a lower-case 's' stands out well enough

As I said, I can live with 's, but C/D,s really is above and beyond
the call of duty for a grammar mangler. You'd love to ask whoever
made those signs, and the person who approved them, "Show me
ONE other person in the whole world who writes C/D,s. And
why didn't you write D/V/D,s ?"

> I enjoy watching these rules change over the years, so I keep
> the old ones

It is interesting seeing them change. Ignorance of the past though,
for example things that used to be general knowledge, is a little
disappointing. A couple of months ago a senior policy-maker for
the NZ education ministry said that "facts don't need to be taught
anymore. That's what the Internet is for". Eeeeuuuw

2008\01\08@230330 by John Gardner

picon face
> Of my collection of dictionaries, only the 1978 US Random House
> says specifically that an apostrophe is used for plurals of acronyms.

Musta been rowed ashore from a submarine on a moonless
night.

Diesel-electric, of course.

Jack

2008\01\09@003906 by Rich

picon face
What you say is true. Yet, it is not technically incorrect to use the
apostrophe in such manner.  Some grammarians consider it archaic and some do
not.  Similarly, the use of commas has been relaxed since the early 60s.


{Original Message removed}

2008\01\09@035050 by Nate Duehr

face
flavicon
face

On Jan 8, 2008, at 8:36 PM, Jinx wrote:

> As I said, I can live with 's, but C/D,s really is above and beyond
> the call of duty for a grammar mangler. You'd love to ask whoever
> made those signs, and the person who approved them, "Show me
> ONE other person in the whole world who writes C/D,s. And
> why didn't you write D/V/D,s ?"


I guess I missed that part of the thread.  I thought we were just  
talking about the apostrophe usage.  I agree, the / is silly.


> It is interesting seeing them change. Ignorance of the past though,
> for example things that used to be general knowledge, is a little
> disappointing. A couple of months ago a senior policy-maker for
> the NZ education ministry said that "facts don't need to be taught
> anymore. That's what the Internet is for". Eeeeuuuw


Yikes.

--
Nate Duehr
spam_OUTnateTakeThisOuTspamnatetech.com



2008\01\09@163025 by Jinx

face picon face
> > A couple of months ago a senior policy-maker for the NZ
> > education ministry said that "facts don't need to be taught
> > anymore. That's what the Internet is for". Eeeeuuuw
>
> Yikes

It reminds me of those post-apocalypse scenarios - "OK, who
knows how to do stuff to keep us alive ? Anybody ? Ooooh,
nobody eh ? Crap"

2008\01\09@230301 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
On Wed, 09 Jan 2008 16:36:53 +1300, Jinx wrote:

> > "The use of the apostrophe after initials (LP's, VIP's) is actually the
> > older style: it was traditionally taught as the only correct form until
> > the past couple decades, when leaving the apostrophe out became
> > an acceptable variant"

I don't know about the USA, but over here it has never been right to use an apostrophe after initials which are used as a name in their own right.

> Of my collection of dictionaries, only the 1978 US Random House
> says specifically that an apostrophe is used for plurals of acronyms.
> The others (going back into the 1950s) may not have felt it worth
> mentioning. Generally it's used (as in it's) to show the omission of
> letters, eg o'clock or fo'c's'le.

Indeed, that's what it always means - it shows where something has been omitted, but when it's an acronym, it would be ridiculous to mark the missing parts -
L'A'S'E'R' is just daft!  :-)  So acronyms are used as they are - LASER, RADAR, IBM, CD, and so on.  Some of these have migrated to lower case (laser, radar)
because they are said as words, whereas CD and DVD are still spelled out.  But it doesn't mean they need any apostrophies.

> But you might think, in these lazy days,
> the fewer characters the better, hence CDs not CD's. If you use
> upper-case for the acronym, a lower-case 's' stands out well enough

It still does even for those which aren't upper case - "lasers" is perfectly correct and understandable.

> As I said, I can live with 's, but C/D,s really is above and beyond
> the call of duty for a grammar mangler. You'd love to ask whoever
> made those signs, and the person who approved them, "Show me
> ONE other person in the whole world who writes C/D,s. And
> why didn't you write D/V/D,s ?"

Well yes, that's just plain ignorance.  Like the tendency to put spurious apostrophes on *all* plurals, as often seen at street markets over here, "Banana's 2kg for
£1", "Vertical and Venetian Blind's", for example.

Then there's the tautological augmentation of acronyms - the worst one I heard was "Personal PIN number"... it was on the radio or I would have pointed out that
he'd just said:  "personal personal identification number number"!  :-)

Cheers,

(still over 1500 PIClist messages behind!)

Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2008\01\09@232601 by Herbert Graf

flavicon
face

On Thu, 2008-01-10 at 04:02 +0000, Howard Winter wrote:
> Then there's the tautological augmentation of acronyms - the worst one I heard was "Personal PIN number"... it was on the radio or I would have pointed out that
> he'd just said:  "personal personal identification number number"!  :-)

Most grammer type stuff doesn't bug me, but that one for some reason
does.

While I haven't personally heard someone say "Personal PIN number, I do
often hear people on this side of the pond saying "PIN Number", or "SIN
Number".

TTYL

More... (looser matching)
- Last day of these posts
- In 2008 , 2009 only
- Today
- New search...