19 marzo 2011

Language evolves: from "e-mail" to "email"

The AP Stylebook, the de facto style and usage guide for much of the news media, announced on Friday that the abbreviated term for “electronic mail” is losing a hyphen, and with it, a relic of a simpler time when Internet technology needed to be explained very carefully.

The move follows the AP Stylebook’s decision to change “Web site” to “website” last year, at which time we wrote, “[We] hold our collective breath for other possible updates, such as changing “e-mail” to “email.’”

Since then the recently much more progressive organization also published a set of 42guidelines and definitions for social media, though the future of “e-mail” remained very much in flux.

Today’s news, fittingly enough, was first announced on the AP Stylebook’s Twitter page, where they tweeted: “Language evolves. Today we change AP style from e-mail to email, no hyphen. Our editors will announce it at #ACES2011 today.” Look for the change to be in effect immediately in the online version of the stylebook and in the 2011 print version.


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