Re: Articles with Initialisms

Subject: Re: Articles with Initialisms
From: WandaJane Phillips <wandajp -at- ANDYNE -dot- ON -dot- CA>
Date: Fri, 23 Feb 1996 12:22:11 -0500

Beverly Parks wrote:

> > Folks, the article before an initialism such as SME should match the
> > "sound" of the first pronounced letter. As I am sure all of us know, a
> > vowel sound calls for the article "an." Thus we should write AN SME
> > (ess begins with a vowel sound) and AN ESLer (ee begins with a vowel
> > sound).

> Dan, you are absolutely correct. The problem, however,
> especially with SME, is that not everyone says it the same way.
> As you do, I say "ess-em-eee", so would naturally write "an
> SME". Other people pronounce it as "smee", so they naturally
> write "a SME".

> Side note: Since I've been subscribed to this list, I find
> myself thinking "smee" more often when I see those letters
> "SME". You folks have quite an influence. 8-)This resembles a thread we had earlier about URL and earls. This morning
while getting ready for work my lodger said *They've set up an earl for
the weather at the ski resort*
My head shot up, I had never considered saying earl until the discussion
here, nor do I say smee -- sounds like the fellow in Peter Pan. But it
was very interesting to actually HEAR earl where I would have said
WandaJane Phillips
Senior Technical Writer -- Pablo
Andyne Computing
Usual disclaimers in effect

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