Editorial Style


Editorial Style

This guide helps writers follow a style that is consistent and appropriate for print and online materials written for and about the association.

Overview

We use the Associated Press Stylebook for our published content. The AP Stylebook is used broadly by the majority of major publications — both print and digital — because of it's consistency, clarity, accuracy and brevity. The most important principle in applying any style is to maintain a consistent editorial approach within a specific piece.

This abbreviated style guide covers items not mentioned in The AP Stylebook, notes items you will most likely encounter, or indicates exceptions ILTA makes to the stylebook.

General Style Tips

  • Use clear, concise language (for example, replace "as well as" with "and" in most cases)
  • Capitalize proper nouns (John Smith, ABC Company, January, etc.)
  • Lowercase for things like: the word "firm," knowledge management, intellectual property practice group, legal industry, etc. (unless part of a proper noun or title)
  • One space after punctuation
  • Spell out single-digit numbers, use numerals for anything larger (one - nine, 10)
  • For a long dash, use two short dashes -- with a space before and after
  • Phone number format - 123.456.7890; email addresses - all lowercase
  • The word "data" can be singular (previously only plural)
  • Don't use an Oxford comma, unless necessary for clarity (use "a pencil, eraser and notebook" rather than "a pencil, eraser, and notebook")
  • Where a term has an "e" in place of "electronic," no hyphen (email, ediscovery, elearning).
  • At the beginning of a sentence or in a title, capitalize the "e" (Email, Ediscovery, Elearning).

Event-Specific Tips for the EPL/VIP System

Title:

Capitalize the first word, nouns, pronouns, adjectives, adverbs, the first letter after a hyphen and verbs (including forms of "be"...is, was, are, am, were, being, etc.). We downcap articles, conjunctions and prepositions under five letters.

  • Should include keyword(s) (security, KM, etc.)
  • Must be fewer than 100 characters and spaces, including the city name, colon and space that will be added to the beginning for in-person events
  • All words should be capitalized, except words like: the, with, and, of, etc. - which are only capped when it's the first word of the title or after a hyphen or colon

Description:

  • If a web/virtual event, include what kind (webinar, virtual roundtable) in the description

Host Info:

  • Use postal abbreviations for state
  • One line between address and host info
  • One space between "Host:" and name

Speaker Bio(s):

  • Keep bios to one short paragraph each
  • If multiple speakers are included, list them alphabetically by last name
  • Use "the" or "a", etc., before a title (the President of; an Information Specialist at)
  • Capitalize proper nouns and current job title only; previous titles are lowercase
  • Don't include education info unless they have very little experience

Important notes for proofing:
The EPL hides any extra or odd spaces, so copy/paste all info (including host address/name) into a Word or similar document and look at/edit it there (any weird spacing will show up). Then paste edited info back into the EPL listing. Additionally, don't use bullets; they don't copy/paste to other platforms well.

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