Re: Trademark Question

Subject: Re: Trademark Question
From: Ronni Geist <ronni -at- GEISTWRITERS -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 2 Apr 1998 17:30:52 -0500

Richard Frederick wrote:

> >
> > "Do not use the possessive form of a product name or a product's
> > feature name. For example, do not use 'toolbar's buttons' or
> > 'PowerPoint's File menu'; instead, use 'toolbar buttons' and
> > 'the PowerPoint File menu.'"
Microsoft Manual of Style for Technical Publications
© 1995, Microsoft Press, page 190

> First of all I ask if Microsoft is setting legal standards, as was implied, or
> if they are simply stating their style preference?

I cannot speak for Microsoft; however, I **believe** that the intent of
their style manual is to provide guidelines for clarity and consistency
for writers and editors. And, generally speaking, this makes a lot of

Whether everyone follows these "guidelines" is, indeed, another
question. I have noticed that some of the so-called standards in this
guide are not adhered to in Microsoft's online help!

> Secondly, aren't we getting back into that "Use 'the' in front of a proper
> noun" question again? Besides, "PowerPoint's" and "toolbar's" are used as
> adjectives. Only if it is "PowerPoint File Menu" is it a noun phrase.

I wasn't trying to go back intent was only to respond to E,T,
Hull's questions: "Why is this a no-no? And who says so?"

Whether you take the word of Microsoft as gospel is your decision! ;-)


Ms. Ronni Geist
ronni -at- geistwriters -dot- com

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