Listen to Fandango shouting, “I am! I am! I am! I am a peeve blogger.” Microsoft Word can be configured to automatically alert you if you don’t use two spaces after each period, by requiring the grammar checker to flag any end-of-sentence spacing that doesn’t match the criteria that you set. I like to use two spaces after the end of every sentence when I write, but others feel and have told me that this represents poor form. Everybody that learned to type on a typewriter was taught to use two spaces at the end of every sentence, but due to the enhanced fonts that are around today, most publications recommend using just one.
APA (American Psychological Association) Style which is a writing style and format for academic documents such as scholarly journal articles and books, commonly used for citing sources within the field of behavioral and social sciences, still recommends using two spaces after every sentence. I came from a technical writing background and I feel that two spaces after every sentence just looks better. I do this for the benefit of my readers, so this is a personal preference, not a matter of what is right or what is wrong. I read a lot of blogs everyday and it does not bother me if people have grammatical mistakes in their writing, but then again, I try not to let many things bother me.
Fandango’s Provocative Question is a matter of psychophysics, which is the branch of psychology that deals with the relationships between physical stimuli and mental phenomena. Today Fandango asks. “If people find typos or grammatical, punctuation, spelling, or usage errors in your posts, do you welcome having them pointed out to you, or do you resent it. As a blogger do you let people know about such mistakes or do you just let them go?”
Space is a good thing and I feel that it does not take up any extra time for my readers to glance over that extra space which I always include, but if I were to write all my words without any space between any of them (allmywordswithoutanyspacebetweenanyofthem) that would make it much more difficult for my readers to decipher what I am saying. I think that the increased space which I use, actually facilitates my readers ability to process my thoughts and thus it helps people understand the meaning of what I am saying. Entire economies are made or broken, wars can be won or lost when ideas are miscommunicated. Some people might find my use of two spaces after a period unsettling, and decide not to read any more of my blogs, well good riddance to them.
If someone finds that I have made a mistake in one of my posts, I would be grateful and thank them for pointing it out to me. Two heads are always better than one and if somebody made me aware of an error, I would feel indebted to them for being such a good proofreader. Everybody makes mistakes as we are all human and you never know what is going to set a certain person off and make them become a raging lunatic, but if they go completely mad because I used a coma instead of a semicolon, then they should learn how to get a life. If I feel that I have developed a relationship with a blogger who has made a typo, I will tell them, not to embarrass them, but in the hope that they would also return the favor.
Written for Fandango’s Provocative Question #51 about typos.