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Strunk and Twite

Confused about which grammar rules to observe when you're limited to 141 characters?  Here's a Twitter style guide.

By
Mignon Fogarty,

Twitter

Grammar Girl's Strunk & Twite: An Unofficial Twitter Style Guide (in which every entry is < 141 characters)

» Don't start posts with “I am.” You're answering the question, “What are you doing?” It's OK to answer with fragments in a conversation. rationale

» Use proper capitalization. Typing in lowercase doesn't save characters; it's just lazy.

» Use proper basic punctuation. It helps people understand what you mean.

» Don't use abbreviations such as 4U and L8. They make you sound like a 12-year-old (which is bad, unless you actually are a 12-year-old).

» Use contractions whenever possible.

» Shorthand symbols such as >,  =, &, and @ are allowed.

» Shortened word forms such as nite and thru are allowed (except for Grammar Girl). rationale

» Use numerals, not words, for all numbers.

» Provide links and context whenever possible. Remember that many of your followers can't see what you are responding to.

» Use tinyurl or http://is.gd to shorten links.

» If you can't say it in 140 characters, reevaluate whether you should be posting it at Twitter. rationale

[Note: Grammar Girl will not respond to grammar questions on Twitter that take > 1 minute of research. Complex questions are for the show.]

Credit for the name "Strunk & Twite" goes to Cathleen Rittereiser.

Follow Grammar Girl on Twitter.

 

About the Author

Mignon Fogarty

Mignon Fogarty is the founder of the Quick and Dirty Tips network and creator of Grammar Girl, which has been named one of Writer's Digest's 101 best websites for writers multiple times. The Grammar Girl podcast has also won Best Education Podcast multiple times in the Podcast Awards, and Mignon is an inductee in the Podcasting Hall of Fame. Mignon is the author of the New York Times best-seller "Grammar Girl's Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing" and six other books on writing. She has appeared as a guest on the "Oprah Winfrey Show" and the "Today Show" and has been featured in the New York Times, Business Week, the Washington Post, USA Today, CNN.com, and more. She was previously the chair of media entrepreneurship in the Reynolds School of Journalism in Reno, NV. She hates the phrase "grammar nazi" and loves the word "kerfuffle." She has a B.A. in English from the University of Washington in Seattle and an M.S. in biology from Stanford University. Mignon believes that learning is fun, and the vast rules of grammar are wonderful fodder for lifelong study. 

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