3 thoughts on “Sunday, March 27, 2022

  1. ONE space after a period – on a computer (MLA, APA, NY Times, Chicago Manual of Style etc….)
    TWO spaces after a period – on a typewriter
    Barbara, I have to retract my quip. Two years ago, when I typed up my first One Typed Page, I quoted my sister (ha! a high tech technical writer) who sent me a Tweet about the one space versus two spaces issue. It seems that every so often, the rumour swirls around. Sorry if I made you go down a rabbit hole. Chicago Manual of Style “Shop Talk” by Russell Harper (3/20/2020) clearly debunks the rumours. https://cmosshoptalk.com/2020/03/24/one-space-or-two/

    The rumour may have been sparked by scientific research on the ease of reading two versus one space in an article in the by James Hamblin Atlantic, “The Scientific Case for Two Spaces After a Period” (2018): https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2018/05/two-spaces-after-a-period/559304/

    The “Shop Talk,” may have sparked the Tweet gone viral. The standard on computer is to use one space after a period. This is mainly because, MS Word and other programs automatically adjust the kerning (the space between letters.) In my days when we were converting the Poetry Flash from typesetting to desktop publishing, a designer told me that double spaces in justified or left justified text, ended up creating rivulets of space in the overall appearance of the text. This is not good typographically. By that, I mean that the two spaces detract from the aesthetic of the kerning.

    NOTE: If a writer is submitting a piece for publication, the editor(s) will automatically take out any additional spaces as a matter of style. This edit detail is especially easy now that we can send an editor a Word file.

    Lastly, of course, we use two spaces when using a typewriter – because the spacing will always be uniform based on the mechanism.

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