The Internet, or the internet

It was to much consternation that an email went around the office on Friday informing us that for the purpose of all future communications we should align ourselves with the Macquarie dictionary usage of no initial caps for “internet”.

“Surely not!”, many screamed. One UX luminary I’m working with practically fell off his chair. “Why align ourselves to Mickey Mouse Macquarie when everyone else uses initial caps for proper nouns?”, he squwarked.

Funny old thing the evolution of the English language. Personally I’ll be sticking to the Internet, but I always write “websites”, rather than “Websites’ as a colleague I’m collaborating with does.

On such matters I generally resign myself to attempts at consistency rather than get into grammatical jousting – which I’m not really up for the fight for.

Strunk and White must be turning in their graves.

All of which puts me in mind of Stephen Fry‘s excellent podcast on the subject of Language. Well worth a listen.


One response to “The Internet, or the internet

  1. I use capital-I for Internet as it’s a proper noun, and althouth intarwebz should be lowercase-i because it’s a plural nominative it really should use capital-I to be suitably ironic. Except it should then be a lowercased capital-I for Intarwebz to be suitably leetspeek where capitalisation is often dropped.

    Capital W for Websites is just wrong though.

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