Electronic Editing: Sample Style Sheet

Electronic Editing: Sample Style Sheet

Please note that the following terms should be made consistent within the text, based on (in order of weight):

1. Specific terms and rules listed below
2. Webster's 10th Collegiate Dictionary
3. Chicago Manual of Style, 14th Edition


check box (2 words)
click (not click on) a button or link
decision-making (hyphenate all decision- compounds)
fixed-price (adj.)
fractions: hyphenate (one-third, one-half, etc.)
Internet or Net
Kb (kilobytes); Kbps (kilobytes per second)
LAN or local area network
log in (v.), login (n.)
Mb (megabytes); Mbps (megabytes per second)
MHz (megahertz)
noncompliance (all "non-" words no hyphen, unless needed for clarity)
now (not "at this time")
online, offline
plug-in (n., adj.); plug in (v.)
predetermined, predefined (adj.)
pre-qualify (v.)
reconfirm, reassign (no hyphen)
T-1, T-3 connections
third-party (adj.)
U.S. (not US)
U.S.$ millions (when national currency could be in doubt)
user name (2 words)
WAN or wide area network
Web, Web site
webmaster, webcast (l.c. all "web+" compounds except "Web site")
well-xxx (hyphenated before the noun: well-regarded, well-edited, etc.)
zip/postal code (l.c.)

Style Rules

  • All numbering per Chicago: spell out one through nine except when referring to purely numerical measures (e.g., 6%, $8.00). Use Arabic for 10+ except at beginning of sentences.

  • Use serial commas: a, b, and c

  • Use "his or her" when an individual general subject was referred to, and either "his" or "her" with recurring, specific examples. Use plural construction or recast sentence whenever possible to avoid this issue.

  • All subheads have initial caps (except "small" words), no punctuation:
    Online Purchases
    Reviewing the Trends

  • All form field names have initial caps (except "small" words); hyphenates are capped as shown:
    Company Name:

  • All items in bulleted lists have first word initial cap, rest lower case. Final item has period at end (complete sentences are also punctuated):
    • Lease programs
    • Payment schedules
    • Frequently asked questions.
  • In tables, table heads are capped. Table contents are initial cap only, phrases (or sentences, when appropriate).

  • This is not Germany, nor is it the seventeenth century—avoid unnecessary capitalization of Important Words. Capitalize proper names (of standards, etc.) but not simple technical terms. See list above for specifics.

  • Copyright 2004, Hilary Powers.



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