Style Guide

​24/7

311 Citizen Service - One-stop telephone portal for all City and County services. 311 is acceptable in all references.

401(k) - No spaces

4th Street Not Fourth Street

9/11 - Acceptable in all references to September 11, 2001. See Sept. 11.
​a lot - Not" alot."

a.m., p.m. - Lowercase with periods (not AM, PM or am, pm). Avoid 2 a.m. in the morning (redundant).

Abbreviations and acronyms - Fully spell out the words on first mention, with its abbreviation or acronym in parentheses. Exceptions include those commonly known to your readers (ATM, scuba, etc.). Example: The Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS) will conduct rail maintenance through March.

Academic degrees - Lowercase bachelor’s degree and master’s degree (note the apostrophe), associate degree and doctoral degree (no apostrophe). Capitalize Bachelor of Arts, Master of Science, etc. Avoid abbreviating degrees (B.A., M.A., Ph.D.) unless when listing many individuals. Programs of study are lowercase unless it is a proper noun. Example: She has a bachelor’s degree in French literature. He has a Master of Arts in history. He has a master's degree in public administration.

Academic departments - Lowercase except for words that are proper nouns. Example: The department of biology, the engineering department, the English department.

Academic titles - Capitalize and spell out formal titles only when they precede a name; otherwise, lowercase. Example: Chancellor Philip Dubois addressed the students at commencement. She was just hired as an assistant professor of anatomy in the department of medicine.

Accommodate, accommodation(s) - Double C, double M.

Acronyms - See abbreviations and acronyms on this page.

AddressOne - Mecklenburg County’s centralized address repository that's spatially enabled for visual representation, access and analysis. One word, no hyphen.

Adopt, approve, enact, pass - See Commonly Misused Words and Phrases.

African American - Two words, no hyphen. Not to be used interchangeably with black, which refers to anyone of African descent. Use African American only if you know for certain the person is American and not another nationality.

Agenda - Plural form is agendas.

Air Force - See military

Airport - Lowercase. Capitalize only when part of the proper name.
Example: Many celebrities lay over at the Charlotte Douglas International Airport. My husband drove me to the Charlotte airport.

aka - Abbreviation for also known as. Lowercase, no periods or spaces.

All right - Not alright.

Alt text - Short for alternative text. Acceptable in all references.

AM - Short for amplitude modulation for radio transmissions. All caps, no periods. Not to be used when listing time of day. See a.m./p.m. on this page.

Anniversary - Avoid first anniversary, the redundant one-year anniversary and terms such as six-month anniversary (or other time that spans less than a year). Similarly, avoid first annual.

Annual - An event cannot be described as annual until it has been held in at least two successive years. Do not use the term "first annual." Instead, note that sponsors plan to hold an event annually.

Annual meeting - lowercase

Anti- Hyphenate all except as indicated in Webster's Dictionary

Armed forces - See military

Army - See military

Asian American - Two words, no hyphen. Use Asian American only if you know for certain the person is American and not another nationality.

At large - two words, no hyphen; an individual representing more than one district. Capitalize only if part of a formal title preceding someone’s name. Examples: City of Charlotte Council Member At Large John Doe spoke at the neighborhood meeting. Jane Doe is a commissioner at large for Mecklenburg County.

Bi- In general, do not use hyphens with this prefix. Also see Usage: prefixes. Examples: bimonthly, bifocal, bilingual

Biannual/biennial/bimonthly - See Commonly Misused Words and Phrases

Board of directors, board of trustees - Always lowercase

BOCC - Refer to Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners on first usage, with BOCC in parentheses immediately following. Acronym acceptable on subsequent references. 
Example: The Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) is responsible for setting the County’s property tax rate. The BOCC also approves the County’s annual budget.

Bus, buses - No double S on the plural form

By - In general, do not use hyphens with this prefix. Also see Usage: prefixes. Examples: byproduct, bypass, byline, bylaw. 
Cancel, canceled, canceling, cancellation Only one" L" except in "cancellation"

Capital Describes money, equipment or property used in a business by a person or corporation.

Capitalization See Usage.

Capitol Capitalize U.S. Capitol and the Capitol when referring to the building in Washington, D.C. Follow the same practice when referring to state capitols.

Call to action No hyphens.

CATS Acronym for Charlotte Area Transit System. All caps. Spell out on first mention with acronym in parentheses.

Cellphone One word

Census Capitalize only in specific references to the U.S. Census; lowercase in other uses. Example: The census data reveals a need to redraw congressional districts. The U.S. Census took place in 2010.

Chairman Use chairman and not chairwoman in all cases unless an organization adopts chair or chairperson as an official title. Capitalize as a formal title before a name. Example: Mecklenburg County Board of County Commissioners Chairman Jane Doe. James Smith is the committee chairman.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Capital C and M; hyphenate.

CharlotteNC.gov Note capitalization. Use this for email addresses, not ci.charlotte.nc.gov

Charlotte Observer See newspaper names.

Chief Capitalize as the formal title before a name; lowercase otherwise. Example: Police Chief John Smith. John Smith is chief of police for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department.

City Council, Charlotte City Council

City of Charlotte, City/city Capitalize when the phrase is used in full. Capitalize City when referring to the City of Charlotte as an organization or government entity. Lowercase when referring to the city in a generic sense. Example: The City of Charlotte unveiled its new recycling program last week. About 20 City staff were on hand for the ribbon-cutting. Charlotte is a city in transition. 

City of Charlotte departments and abbreviations (if applicable) 
  • Animal Care & Control (ACC)
  • Aviation
  • Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS)
  • Charlotte Department of Transportation (CDOT)
  • Charlotte Fire Department (CFD)​
  • Charlotte Water
  • Charlotte-Mecklenburg Community Relations Committee (CRC)
  • Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD)
  • Charlotte-Mecklenburg Storm Water Services (Storm Water)
  • City Attorney
  • City Clerk
  • City Council
  • City Manager
  • Engineering & Property Management (EPM)
  • Human Resources (HR)
  • Innovation & Technology (I&T)
  • Internal Audit
  • International Relations
  • Management & Financial Services (MFS)
  • Mayor
  • Neighborhood & Business Services (NBS)
  • Planning
  • Solid Waste Services (SWS)
CityLYNX Gold Line
Citywide/citywide One word, no hyphen. Capitalize when referring to the City of Charlotte as an organization; lowercase otherwise.
Example: Procurement practices are under review Citywide. The Democratic National Convention should have a financial impact citywide.

Commissioner Double M, double S. Never abbreviate. Capitalize as the formal title before a name. Lowercase in all other references.
Example: The media was on hand to get comments from Commissioner John Smith. Jane Jones, commissioner for District 2, was among those in attendance.

Committee Do not abbreviate. Capitalize only when used as a formal name. Example: Domestic Violence Advisory Committee

Company and product names For a company’s formal name, consult the New York Stock Exchange (nyse.com), Nasdaq (nasdaq.com) or American Stock Exchange (amex.com). Do not use a comma before Inc. or Ltd., even if it is included in the formal name. In general, follow the spelling and capitalization preferred by the company (eBay, iPhone). Do not use all caps unless the letters are individually pronounced (IBM). Others should be initial-cap (Ikea, not IKEA; USA Today, not USA TODAY). Do not use symbols such as asterisks or plus signs that could distract a reader (Yahoo, not Yahoo!; E-Trade, not E*Trade)

Compose vs. comprise See Commonly Misused Words and Phrases.

Composition titles (books, songs, radio and television programs, movies, etc.) Capitalize the principal words, including prepositions and conjunctions of four or more letters. Capitalize an article (the, an, a) if it is the first or last word in a title. In general, surround titles in quotations, with the following exceptions:
  • ​games – computer games, video games, board games
  • magazines – however, titles of magazine articles should be in quotation marks
  • newspapers – however, titles of newspaper articles should be in quotation marks
  • software
  • speech names that aren’t actual titles, such as the State of the City address
  • blogs – however, titles of individual blog posts should be in quotation marks (unless they are titled with dates only)
  • names of websites
Compound modifier Two words that work together to describe a noun. Compound modifiers are hyphenated. Examples: part-time job, user-friendly website, light-colored sweater.

Congress Capitalize U.S. Congress and Congress when referring to the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives and if referring to a foreign body that uses the term or its equivalent in a foreign language. Example: Its business being done, Congress adjourned early.

Congressional Lowercase unless part of a proper name. Example: The hot topic this session is congressional salaries.

Congressman, congresswoman Use representative or senator whenever possible; otherwise, capitalize when part of a formal title preceding a name and lowercase in all other references.

Cost of living/cost-of-living Hyphenate only when used as a compound modifier. Example: The cost of living went up, but he did not receive a cost-of-living raise.

Council member Never abbreviate, and always use council member, never councilman, councilwoman or councilperson. Capitalize as the formal title before a name; lowercase in all other references. Example: Council Member Jane Doe voted in favor of the measure. But John Smith, at large council member, voted against it.

County/county Capitalize when referring to Mecklenburg County as an organization or government entity. Lowercase when referring to the county in a generic sense. See Mecklenburg County.
Example: Mecklenburg County will perform a revaluation in 2011. If your property is not within the county limits, your tax bill will not be affected.

Countywide/countywide One word, no hyphen. Capitalize when referring to Mecklenburg County as an organization; lowercase otherwise. See Citywide/citywide on this page.

Courthouse Capitalize all references to Mecklenburg County Courthouse. Lowercase is used in other instances. 
Example: The courthouse near my house needs to be painted. It does not compare to the Mecklenburg County Courthouse.

Courtroom One word, no hyphen.

Curb It! program The City’s residential garbage, yard waste and recycling collection program.
Database - one word

Dates - Always use Arabic figures and do not use ordinal endings such as 5th, 22nd, etc. Only use ordinals when using the number by itself. Example: City offices will close on January 1 to observe the New Year’s Day holiday. The City will observe Independence Day on July 4. All August meetings are on schedule, but the meeting on the 25th is canceled.

Day care - Two words, no hyphen, in all cases

Daylight saving time - Lowercase; no ‘s’ at the end of ‘saving.’

Days of the week - Never abbreviate unless listing in a tabular format. Sun, Mon, Tue (three letters, no periods)

Decimals - Place a zero before decimals less than 1 (e.g., 0.27). In describing millions, use one decimal place at most (e.g., $2.7 million). In describing billions, use no more than two decimal places (e.g. $3.26 billion).

Democrat, democratic, Democratic Party - See political parties.

Department - Capitalize when referring to the full names of specific federal, state or local government departments. Lowercase for casual usage. Lowercase in plural uses, but capitalize the proper name element. See Mecklenburg County departments, City of Charlotte departments and abbreviation and acronyms.
Examples: Lines were long at the Mecklenburg County Health Department for vaccinations. The health department conducts restaurant inspections. Lawmakers plan to cut certain funding streams to departments of Social Services across the country.

Directions and regions - Lowercase compass directions; capitalize when they designate regions. Example: The storm is moving northeast. She has a Southern accent despite having lived in the Midwest for 15 years.

District - Never abbreviate; use a figure and capitalize ‘district’ when forming a proper name. 
Example: Michael Barnes represents the 4th District.

Dog park - Two words. It is lowercase unless used as part of a formal name. 
Example: I took my dogs to Davie Dog Park.

Dollars - Always lowercase; always use figures with ‘$’ except casual references or amounts without a figure. Avoid decimals if the figure is a whole number. Example: The fire caused thousands of dollars in damage. Gas is almost $3 per gallon.

Domestic Violence Advocacy Council - On first reference use Domestic Violence Advocacy Council (DVAC). DVAC is acceptable on second reference.

Domestic Violence Speakers Bureau - On first reference use Domestic Violence Speakers Bureau (DVSB). DVSB is acceptable on second reference.​
​e.g. - This means "for example." It is always followed by a comma.

eGovernment (County use only) - Lowercase "e" and capital "g", one word. eGov is acceptable on second reference.  

each other  -Two words

email - Short for electronic mail. One word in all cases. 

Email addresses - Please use @charlottenc.gov for all City email addresses and @mecklenburgcountync.gov for all County email addresses. All old former City addresses (@ci.charlotte.nc.us) are being phased out. You may put the address in anchor text (mailto:tcwarren@charlottenc.gov), but also display the full address for users at public computers who cannot use the email program that automatically launches when anchor text is clicked.
Example: Please direct questions about charmeck.org to Shawn Proffitt at sproffitt@charlottenc.gov or Keisha Portis at keisha.portis@mecklenburgcountync.gov.

eParks - Lowercase E and capital P, one word, no hyphen.

EpiCentre - A dining and entertainment hub in uptown Charlotte. Note capitalization.

Every day/everyday - see Commonly Misused Words and Phrases.

Express bus routes - Number followed by a lowercase “x.”
Example: If you live in Matthews, the 65x bus is the best bus for you.
​Facebook

FAQ - Acronym for frequently asked questions. No punctuation.

Federal - Only capitalize when referring to the architectural style or for corporate or government bodies that use federal as part of its name. Examples: the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Federal Trade Commission, the federal budget, federal lawmakers, federal court.

firefighter Use this instead of fireman, fireperson or firewoman.


former Always lowercase, but retain capitalization for a formal title used immediately before a name. Example: Mayor Smith and Charlotte City Manager Jane Jones attended the meeting. John Brown, former Mecklenburg county manager, made a brief appearance.

Fourth of July, July Fourth, July 4 Never July 4th

Fourth Street - Do not use. Incorrect reference to 4th Street in Charlotte. See 4th Street.

FM Short for frequency modulation for radio transmissions. Do not use to denote time of day. All caps, no periods.

fractions see Numbers and Numerals.

full- Hyphenate when used to form compound modifiers like full-fledged, full-figured, full-length, etc. Also see Usage: prefixes.

fundraising, fundraiser One word, no hyphens or spaces.​
​government Always lowercase, never abbreviate.
Examples: U.S. government, the federal government, city government, local government, state government, government workers.

governmental bodies Capitalize full proper names of governmental bodies and/or departments. Examples: U.S. Department of State, Charlotte Department of Transportation.

governor, lieutenant governor Capitalize and abbreviate as Gov. or Govs. when used as a formal title before one or more names. Lowercase otherwise. 
Examples: Gov. Pat McCrory, Govs. Pat McCrory and Nikki Haley, Gov. Haley. Pat McCrory, governor of North Carolina, faces a tough budget year.

GovDelivery Capital ‘g,’ capital ‘d.’

GOV Channel Two words, “gov” in all caps.

greenway One word. Capitalize when referring to a specific name. Lowercase is used in other references. Example: The Sugar Creek Greenway is part of an impressive greenway system.

groundwater One word

ground zero Lowercase
​headlines See formatting guidelines

headquarters Singular despite the ‘s’ at the end. Example: The headquarters is in Charlotte.

health care Two words

highway patrol Capitalize if used in the formal title of a police agency; lowercase otherwise. Examples: North Carolina Highway Patrol, the highway patrol.

Hispanic See Latino, Latina

homebuilder,  homebuyer, homeowner One word

home page Two words

home ownership Two words

Honorable An honorary title for judges. Capitalize. Hon. It is an acceptable abbreviation.

hors d’oeuvre

household one word
​i.e. Abbreviation for the Latin id est or that is and is always followed by a comma.

ImaginOn One word, note the capital "O"


in-home aide Two words, hyphenate in-home.

index, indexes The plural form is not ‘indices.’

info In general, use information rather than info.

internet Lowercase

intranet Lowercase

iPad, iPhone, iPod classic, iPod touch, iPod nano, iTunes Note the capital "p"and lowercase classic, touch and nano.

irregardless Never use. See Commonly Misused Words and Phrases

jargon In general, avoid jargon, as it alienates readers.

job titles Capitalize as part of a formal title before someone’s name. Lowercase otherwise. Examples: Assistant Director Mary Taylor sent the email. Michelle is the communications and marketing specialist assigned to the campaign.

judge, justice Capitalize before a name when it is part of a formal title; lowercase otherwise.

junior, jr., senior, sr. Abbreviate as Jr. and Sr. only with full names of persons or animals. Do not precede with a comma. Example: Martin Luther King Jr.

Just1Call One-stop source of information and assistance for senior citizens, adults with disabilities, caregivers and service providers. One word, no hyphens, no spaces.​
​K Use ‘K’ (capitalize) in reference to modem transmission speeds. Do not use ‘K’ to refer to 1,000 or $1,000. Example: He has a 56K modem. K-9, K-9 unit

Key Business Executives (KBEs), Key Business Units (KBUs) This terminology is no longer in use by the Manager's Office. Use "department" instead.

Kwanzaa a secular festival observed by many African Americans from December 26 to January 1 as a celebration of their cultural heritage and traditional values. 
Latinos, Latinas Generally preferred over Hispanic, as its meaning is broader than Hispanic to include anyone who hails or is descended from a Spanish-speaking country. Latinos refers to males; Latinas refers to females. Capitalize.

laws Capitalize legislative actions but not bills. Examples: The Taft-Hartley Act, the Kennedy bill.


layoff (noun), lay off (verb) See Commonly Misused Words and Phrases.

legislative titles Use Rep., Reps., Sen. and Sens. as formal titles before one or more names. Spell out and lowercase representative and senator in all other uses. Use congressman or congresswoman in subsequent references that do not use an individual’s name.
Example: Sen. Richard Burr supported the repeal of “Don’t ask, don’t tell.”

less than vs. under See Commonly Misused Words and Phrases

livable No "e" in the middle.

login/logoff/logout (noun), log in/log off/log out (verb) See Commonly Misused Words and Phrases

LYNX Charlotte Area Transit System’s light rail system. All caps.

marines See military

Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners On first reference, use Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners (BOCC). On subsequent references, BOCC is acceptable.

Mecklenburg County On first reference, use Mecklenburg County. On subsequent references use the County.

​MecklenburgCountyNC.gov Always capitalize the M for Mecklenburg, C for County, and NC for North Carolina.

Medicaid, Medicare Always capitalize. 
   
mid- No hyphen unless a capitalized word follows. Also see Usage: prefixes. Examples: Mid-Atlantic, midterm.

middle initials Use according to a person’s preference.

middle names Use them only with people who are publicly known that way (James Earl Jones) or to prevent confusion with people of the same name.

midnight Do not put "12" in front of it (redundant). It is part of the day that is ending, not the one that is beginning. Example: We watched the ball drop at midnight on New Year’s Eve.

military (Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard) Capitalize when referring to the U.S. forces. Lowercase when referring to military in other countries. Examples: the U.S. Navy, the Navy, U.S. Coast Guard, Air Force, the Marines, the Army, the Israeli army.

million, billion Use figures with million or billion in all except casual uses. Examples: I’d like to make a billion dollars. The nation has 1 billion citizens. The lottery ticket was worth $1.5 million.

mini- In general, no hyphens needed. Also see Usage: prefixes.
Examples: minivan, miniseries, miniskirt.

minus sign Use a hyphen, not a dash, but use the word minus if there is any danger of confusion. Use a word, not a minus sign, to indicate temperatures below zero. Example: minus 10 or 5 below zero.

more than vs. over See Commonly Misused Words and Phrases

My-Charlotte The City of Charlotte’s mobile application; capitalize in all references; two words joined by a hyphen.
​NASCAR Acceptable in all references for National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing. 
 
nationalities and races Capitalize the proper names of nationalities, peoples, races, tribes, etc. Examples: Arab, Arabic, African, American, Caucasian, Cherokee, Chinese, Eskimo, French Canadian, Japanese, Jew, Jewish, Nordic, Sioux, Swede, etc.

National League of Cities

nationwide No hyphen

Navy See military

newspaper names Capitalize ‘the’ in a newspaper’s name if that is the way the publication prefers to be known, or if that is how it appears on the nameplate or masthead. List The Charlotte Observer the first time; Observer is acceptable for subsequent references.

non- In general, do not use a hyphen when forming a compound that does not have special meaning and can be understood if not is used before the base word. Also see Usage: prefixes. Examples: nonbinding agreement, nonmember, nonsensical.

noon Do not put "12" in front of it (redundant). Example: Lunch was served promptly at noon.

no one Two words
​Office Capitalize when it is part of an agency’s formal name. Lowercase all other uses. Examples: City Manager's Office. Our meeting took place in the Mayor's office.

OK Not okay

online/offline One word, lowercase

​paragraph spacing See formatting guidelines

part time, part-time See Commonly Misused Words and Phrases

party affiliation Capitalize when it refers to a specific party or its members. You can use short-form punctuation. Examples: Democrat John Smith replaces Republican Ellen Jones as minority leader. Jason Majors, R-N.C., voted to repeal the “don’t ask don’t tell” legislation.

PDF Acronym for portable document format. Acceptable in all references.

percent One word, spell out, use with figures. Example: Council Members cut the budget by 5 percent.

phone numbers Hyphens only, no ( ) for area code. Example: 704-336-7600 

planning Avoid the redundant "future planning." Capitalize Planning when referring to the City department.

plurals see usage

POLARIS Acronym Property Ownership and Land Records Information System. All capital letters. No punctuation.

podcast Lowercase

political parties See party affiliation.

prefixes see usage


president Capitalize only as a formal title before one or more names. Lowercase in all other references. Examples: Presidents Reagan and Bush were both Republicans. Barack Obama was president for eight years.

press conference, press release News conference and news release are preferred​

​Queen City A common nickname for Charlotte, named after Queen Charlotte, wife of King George III of England, who hails from Mecklenburg-Strelitz in Germany. Queen City is often used in Charlotte business names and publications.​

​real time (n.); real-time (adj.) see Commonly Misused Words and Phrases.

Recycle It! The City’s residential recycling program.

​RideCATS Charlotte Area Transit System’s mobile app

Right of way, rights of way no hyphens

Roman numerals See numerals and numbers

RSVP Abbreviation for the French repondez s’il vous plait, which means “please reply.” Therefore, “RSVP please” is redundant and should not be used.
​seasons Lowercase spring, summer, fall, autumn and winter and derivations such as springtime unless it is part of a formal name.
Examples: Winter Olympics, 10th Annual Autumn Festival, I love springtime in New York.

semiannual More than once per year. Synonym for biannual. Do not confuse with biennial, which means every two years.

sentence spacing See formatting guidelines

​Sept. 11 The term for describing the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Use 2001 if needed for clarification. Also acceptable is 9/11. See 9/11.


spokesman, spokeswoman Never use spokesperson. Use representative if you do not know the gender of the individual.

state names Spell out completely if standing alone. Otherwise, use the following abbreviations. Postal abbreviations are in parentheses and should only be used with full addresses.

Alabama - Ala. (AL)
Arizona - Ariz. (AZ)
Arkansas - Ark. (AR)
California - Calif. (CA)
Colorado - Colo. (CO)
Connecticut - Conn. (CT)
Delaware - Del. (DE)
Florida - Fla. (FL)
Illinois - Ill. (IL)
Indiana - Ind. (IN)
Kansas - Kan. (KS)
Kentucky - Ky. (KY)
Louisiana - La. (LA)
Maryland - Md. (MD)
Massachusetts - Mass. (MA)
Michigan - Mich. (MI)
Minnesota - Minn. (MN)
Mississippi - Miss. (MS)
Missouri - Mo. (MO)
Montana - Mont. (MT)
Nebraska - Neb. (NE)
Nevada - Nev. (NV)
Hew Hampshire - N.H. (NH)
New Jersey - N.J. (NJ)
New Mexico - N.M. (MN)
New York - N.Y. (NY)
North Carolina - N.C. (NC)
North Dakota - N.D. (ND)
Oklahoma - Okla. (OK)
Oregon - Ore. (OR)
Pennsylvania - Pa. (PA)
Rhode Island - R.I. (RI)
South Carolina - S.C. (SC)
South Dakota - S.D. (SD)
Tenn. (TN)
Vermont - Vt. (VT)
Virginia - Va. (VA)
Washington - Wash. (WA)
West Virginia - W.Va. (WV)
Wisconisn - Wis. (WI)
Wyoming - Wyo. (WY)

States without an abbreviation
Alaska (AK)
Hawaii (HI)
Idaho (ID)
Iowa (IA)
Maine (ME)
Ohio (OH)
Texas (TX)
Utah (UT)
District of Columbia (DC) 

State of the Union address, State of the County address, State of the City address Lowercase "address"

Storm Water Services, storm water Two words

sub In general, no hyphen. See usage

subsite One word. See usage
​Temperatures Use figures for all except zero. Use a word, not a minus sign, to indicate temperatures below zero. Example: Today’s low is 51 degrees, a far cry from the record low of minus 6 set in 1954.
 


their, there, they’re See Commonly Misused Words and Phrases

till or until but never ‘til.

time of day Use figures except for midnight and noon. Use a colon to separate minutes from hours. If it is the top of the hour, a colon is not necessary. Avoid redundancies such as The dog woke me up at 6 a.m. in the morning. Also see a.m. and p.m. Examples: My appointment is at 11:15 a.m. Lunch will be served promptly at noon. I work from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and take lunch from 1 to 2 p.m. I didn’t get to sleep until 2 this morning.

titles In general, confine capitalization to formal titles used directly before an individual’s name. Lowercase and spell out titles when they are not used with an individual’s name. Examples: Speaker of the House John Smith will appear. The city manager plans to present his recommended budget early this year.
​under vs. less than See Commonly Misused Words and Phrases

underway One word

United States Use periods in the abbreviation, U.S., within texts. In headlines, it’s OK to use US (no periods).

uptown always lowercase unless it starts a sentence. Example: Speed Street brings thousands of race fans to uptown Charlotte every May.

voice mail Two words
wastewater One word

web Lowercase W unless it begins a sentence

webcam, webcast, webinar, weblog, webmaster, webmaster One word, lowercase, no hyphens

webpage One word, lowercase 

website One word, no hyphens, lowercase

Wi-Fi Capital "w" and "f" with hyphen

wiki, wikis Lowercase

work force Two words

workplace One word
​year-end (adjective), year’s end (noun)  Example: We should know by year’s end what the year-end numbers will look like.

yearlong no hyphen

YouTube Note capitalization.

zero, zeros No "e" in the plural form.

ZIP code Use all caps because ZIP is an acronym for Zoning Improvement Plan.

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