Definite articles in front of acronyms

Subject: Definite articles in front of acronyms
From: Keith Soltys <ksoltys -at- DJTTD -dot- COM>
Date: Fri, 18 Oct 1996 14:02:50 GMT

I would like to know how people handle definite articles in front of
acroynms.

For example, our company has a system called the Merged Quotation
Distribution System, which is abbreviated MQDS. People almost always use the
acronym.

In our documentation, sometimes the definite article (the) is placed before
the acronym, sometime's it's not. I've being trying to make the usage
consistent, usually by adding the article.

I'm wondering if anyone has a general rule for this? I can't find anything
in any of the style guides that I've looked at, including the Chicago Manual.

Regards
Keith
------------------------------------------------------------------
Keith Soltys -- ksoltys -at- djttd -dot- com -- http://www.io.org/~ksoltys/
Technical Writer, Technical Development, Dow Jones Telerate Canada Inc.
------------------------------------------------------------------
Certainly the game is rigged. Don't let that stop you;
if you don't bet, you can't win. --Robert A. Heinlein


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