Two Spaces after a Sentence Period

I can’t help writing about the usage of two spaces after a period. Remember, first and foremost I’m an editor. I’m bound to give the client what is required. With editing there are right/wrong issues. Then there style preferences issues. Deciding to use one or two spaces at the end of a sentence is a style issue. It just so happens to be one I feel strongly about.

WHY?

  1. Simple really. As an editor it wastes my time having to check and usually add in spaces when two spaces after a period are required. It cannot be done automatically because the two-space “rule” does not apply to the usage of periods elswehere, for example, after a abbreviation or in the all important reference section of an academic paper.
  2. I’ve seen too many students spending time on agonizing about spaces when they should be focused on content or academic phrasing or maybe general formatting. Spaces after a period …!

I came across an article that really does not like the two-space preference and so I simply have to share:

Ferhard Manjoo wrote: [pullquote_left] Can I let you in on a secret? Typing two spaces after a period is totally, completely, utterly, and inarguably wrong. [/pullquote_left]

The article is a good read, and looks at a bit of the history of the one vs. two space question. It also points out what certain academic referencing styles advise. To sum up: one space. According to the author this applies to APA as well once no longer a draft.

http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/technology/2011/01/space_invaders.html

Read more in the next post about APA and whether one or two spaces.

 

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