Blog: Dave LeggettWhat's in a name?

Dave Leggett | 28 September 2011

Good posting here from one of the Autocar lads on the subbing issues that arise for us media people due to the mad and improper punctuation and capitalisation that has been creeping into car model names. It has been causing us at just-auto increasing consternation also. It's not just cars either. The marketeers in all walks of life appear to think this kind of thing is clever. Is it any wonder that the kids (and many adults) are increasingly illiterate? Apostrophe abuse on signage is everywhere. Does it matter that people can't follow rules when writing? I know language in both written and spoken forms is continually evolving, but generally speaking and unless there's a good reason for departing from rules that promote clarity of communication, yes it does. We'll eventually end up losing things, like the possessive apostrophe, as people become incapable of understanding and using it (I could put an exclamation mark in at the end of that sentence but will refrain on the basis that there are just too many of them around these days). Ask the person sitting next to you if they know what a proper noun is.

With respect to autos, the lower case 's' in smart has been driving me quietly mad for years. And I never liked MINI instead of Mini. And then there's the Kia model that should be Ceed but isn't...I could go on, but I think that's enough from me for now. The man at Autocar speaks for many of us. I'll calm down and have a cup of tea.

Why punctuation in car names drives me £±**!^@ mad!


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