RE: starting a sentence w/lower-case product name

Subject: RE: starting a sentence w/lower-case product name
From: "Janoff, Steven" <Steven -dot- Janoff -at- ga -dot- com>
To: TechWR-L <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 8 Mar 2013 18:58:05 -0800

What about when the product name is in all lowercase? No internal caps at all. For example, "philosophy" for the skin care line. They use it all lowercase as the first word of sentences on their web site. I always find this situation uncomfortable but it seems legitimate, especially, as others have said, when it is a trademark. (I think what's weird is that you feel that there's a lack of reference point. That initial cap is an anchor in a way, and we're so used to it -- without it, we feel like we're reading a sentence where something was cut out. There's a great book on punctuation by Robert Brittain where he considers the initial capital at the beginning of a sentence to be a punctuation mark every bit as much as the period at the end. In fact I think he said they were tandem punctuation or something.)

Steve

-----Original Message-----
From: On Behalf Of Monique Semp
Sent: Friday, March 08, 2013 5:21 PM
To: Monique Semp; TechWR-L
Subject: Re: starting a sentence w/lower-case product name

A Ha!

I signed up for a 30-day free trial subscription to the online Chicago, and here's the full citation in the 16th edition:

"8.153 Names like eBay and iPod
Brand names or names of companies that are spelled with a lowercase initial letter followed by a capital letter (eBay, iPod, iPhone, etc.) need not be capitalized at the beginning of a sentence or heading, though some editors may prefer to reword. This departure from Chicagoâs former usage recognizes not only the preferred usage of the owners of most such names but also the fact that such spellings are already capitalized (if only on the second letter). Company or product names with additional, internal capitals (sometimes called âmidcapsâ) should likewise be left unchanged (GlaxoSmithKline, HarperCollins, LexisNexis). See also 8.4.

eBay posted strong earnings.
User interfaces varied. iTunes and its chief rival, Amazon.com, . . .
In text that is set in all capitals, such distinctions are usually overridden (e.g., EBAY, IPOD, HARPERCOLLINS); with a mix of capitals and small capitals, they are preserved (e.g., EBAY)."

So this is definitely evolving, and it's very relevant how recent a version of Chicago one goes with. For reference, you can find the publication dates in the wikipedia article, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chicago_Manual_of_Style#History_of_editions

So IMHO, nobody in the fast-paced modern world of mobile apps should be using a style guide from 1993 or even 2003, when mobile games didn't even exist and the brand name styles didn't really start with lowercase letters!

-Monique

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References:
starting a sentence w/lower-case product name: From: Monique Semp
Re: starting a sentence w/lower-case product name: From: Monique Semp
Re: starting a sentence w/lower-case product name: From: Monique Semp

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