One Space or Two?
Q. Please help. I have confusion regarding the correct spacing after periods and other closing punctuation. My company uses the font Arial and consistently uses a flush-left margin. We are an engineering company. My job consists in preparing documents and letters for customers. Everything I read in manuals and from technical writers directs me to use one space after periods. I find that it works very well, except occasionally, when an extra space helps readability. Knowledgeable engineers have embraced the one space use as being consistent with the font design and automation of reports. Others are unpleased with the one space, they think they have difficulty reading. (I, too, had an adjustment period which I forced myself to endure until it became automatic to read easily.) We are preparing technical information. What do you think? Thanks for your wonderful support and especially the quick answers. I greatly appreciate your service.
Q. Help. How many spaces do you leave after a colon in a manuscript?
Q. About two spaces after a period. As a US Marine, I know that what’s right is right and you are wrong. I declare it once and for all aesthetically more appealing to have two spaces after a period. If you refuse to alter your bullheadedness, I will petition the commandant to allow me to take one Marine detail to conquer your organization and impose my rule. Thou shalt place two spaces after a period. Period. Semper Fidelis.
Q. All right then! I’m steadfastly attempting to adopt the “one space after concluding punctuation” rule. It’s not an easy task for a retired English teacher in his late sixties—one who preached the old rule to legions of eager-eyed scholars. Are there any retraining suggestions that assist the elder learner? I’m tired of correcting my continual errors. I am diligently trying, though.
Q. I took typing in 1967 and was taught the two-space convention and have used it ever since. That is, until one of those pesky millennials complained and slapped me with your website. When did the convention change?
Q. I recognize all writing formats today say there is to be one space between the period of a sentence and the first letter of the next sentence. I believe this fails to take into account studies that refer to visual cues that assist the reading process. So I start here with you to request this be fully discussed and reviewed with the hope that we may at minimum note that two spaces are acceptable between sentences. Thank you for your consideration of this matter.
Q. When did CMOS first recommend one space (instead of two) after periods and colons? I found the one-space rule in the 15th edition, but I remember hearing somewhere that it goes back to the 13th edition. I’m trying to win arguments with people who claim it’s a “new” rule.