JS Tip 443: Capitalization, Part the Third

From the Writing Workshops: cAPItaliZING thREE

Three final capitalization guidelines:  

One. Capitalize the first words of a displayed list:

  • Use the company colors in the advertisement:


    • • Maroon
      • Tan
      • Dark green

But don’t capitalize the words if you list the items in a sentence:

  • Use the company colors in the advertisement: maroon, tan, and dark green.

(Notice the punctuation as well. No commas or periods in the displayed list. Commas, a connecting word, and a period in the sentence list.)

Two. Capitalize the major words in headings, sub-headings, and titles: 

Profits Improved in the Second Quarter

The Attorney General’s Report on Things

Gone with the Wind

When you write a subject line, you have a choice:

Request for a New Copier

Request for a new copier

Equally acceptable. Don’t worry about it.

Three. Strangely capitalized names have a life of their own:

Names like eBay and iPad don’t require an initial capital even if they start a sentence:

  • eBay changed its billing system this year.

    iPads can serve as excellent training devices.

If you have questions or comments, let us know. We love this stuff.

Old tips are available on the new website: www.jeffsmith.com..

Mark Brooks