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Saturday, July 28, 2012

6 Reasons Why Grammar Still Matters in the Digital Age | Andrew Hindes, PR News

Noting that many people these days are writing in "cryptic half-sentences with hashtags, LOLs, smiley faces" and other thoughts that can fit 140-character tweets and 160-character text messages, Hindes asks:
Do grammar and punctuation still matter when it comes to writing press materials? In other words, do PR professionals really need to worry about whether the period goes inside or outside the quotation marks when crafting an e-mail pitch?
His answer, at least for now: "a resounding yes." And he explains why the basic rules of usage, punctuation and style still matter:

Credibility: Press materials with grammatical errors indicate ignorance or carelessness on the part of the writer ....

Professionalism: Similarly, sloppily written materials can create a negative impression ....

Respect: Underpaid and overworked journalists may resent receiving a document filled with errors ....

Clarity: Grammar and punctuation errors can result in ambiguities or misunderstandings.

Convenience: Harried journalists often opt to copy whole sentences or even paragraphs of PR materials verbatim. If your grammatical gaffe slips through, it makes them look bad.

Posterity: Press materials distributed across the Internet live on forever—along with any mistakes they contain.

This article is featured in today's Garbl's Style: Write Choices -- available the Editorial Style tab above and by free email subscription.

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