I Think I’m Spacing Out

By: Scott Stein, Senior Account Executive, Leonard & Finco Public Relations, Inc.

The last few days have been quite a roller coaster ride. First, our beloved Packers beat the dreaded Bears to earn a trip to the Super Bowl…then two days later I learn that I’m only supposed to use one space after my sentences. Apparently long after I was taught that two spaces should be used, the powers that be decided that one space is sufficient.

This is particularly disturbing since I mentor my younger co-workers. And this revelation also comes after the AP Stylebook people decided just last year that Web site should now be website and e-mail should be email. How many grammar / style changes can a guy adjust to, particularly a veteran writer like me.

I learned of the “one space, not two” situation through Eileen’s Blog, which describes the writer as “The Accidental Oregonian.” Eileen, too, was shocked to learn that there had been a change in the spacing requirements, even telling one editor that he was wrong. She went to the AP Stylebook, just as I did yesterday, where it was confirmed that we were wrong by insisting on using two spaces after a period. It’s right there on page 372 of the AP Stylebook Punctuation Guide…“Use a single space after a period at the end of a sentence.”

To those who read the news releases I draft, my posts on Facebook, my Tweets, or other ramblings, please be patient. It could take some time for me to adjust to hitting the space bar once instead of twice after each sentence. To my co-workers, please watch my spacing habits closely. Some changes are more difficult than others; this one’s going to be tough.

I can’t be the only one who didn’t know that two spaces after a sentence was outdated. Are you a one space or two space person? Let me know.