Friday, June 22, 2007

Grade school vs. AP Style

I have written briefly (very briefly) about a few of the differences between what we learned about grammar in school and what AP Style dictates. I would like to share a little bit more about this topic. (I apologize now if this gets a little random or starts to sound like a rant.)

My topic for today is capitalization in titles/headlines. I always was taught that you should capitalize the first letter of every word in a title, excluding articles (a, an, the – unless it is the first word in the title) and prepositions (to, of, etc.). AP Style says that you should only capitalize the first letter of the first word in the title. Let me give you an example to show you the difference in a clear and concise manner:

A Story Told by a Blind Man (how I learned it)
A story told by a blind man (AP Style)

Why does AP Style have to change all of the rules that we had to learn and relearn every year? I don’t know, and it upsets me just as much as it upsets you! I really am happy using the rules that I have been using for the past 15 years, but I follow AP when necessary (online). I suggest you do the same (or risk looking outdated and uneducated).

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